Table of Contents
Before DrivingPrevention is the best way to decrease back pain when driving. The following precautions are recommended:
- Think about getting helpful sitting aids/lumbar support cushions, like memory foam and air-filled seat cushions.
- If specifically dealing with tailbone pain, a support with a tailbone cutout is recommended.
- Optimize the seat by placing the back a little beyond fully upright. From 100 to 105-110 degrees, so the individual maintains proper posture. Inclining more can lead to a forward-head posture that can cause neck pain.
- Driving ergonomics need to be incorporated.
- The seat should be close enough to the steering wheel to provide a relaxed upper body posture. However, make sure that the legs are not to close to the steering wheel and there is room to maneuver. The seat should be level around 5 degrees upward to provide support to the legs.
- If unable to provide lumbar support rolling up a towel/thick sweater etc can be placed in the small of the back providing a quick fix.
The DriveEyes on the road and hands at 10 and 2 but don’t take the focus off the spine.
- If driving for more than 20 minutes, it is recommended to make adjustments/changes in the seated position. Just a slight tweak can reduce the driving forces on the spine.
- Driving for longer than an hour then short breaks are necessary. Pit stops are spine savers. Just like work breaks that involve standing, walking around, and stretching out, bending forward and leaning backward will keep the spine flexible, uncompressed with optimal blood flow.
- Heated seats can help soothe tight back muscles. It acts as a heating pad.
- Remove items from pockets, especially wallets or similar objects in the back pocket. This can lead to an asymmetrical position that leads to shifting weight/stress loads to one side creating an added strain on the spine and awkward postures.
StoppingAfter driving for an extended period, resting is vital to spine health. Utilize time out of the vehicle to continue prevention.
- Sitting right after driving is not recommended.
- Right after driving the body needs to move after being in the static driving/passenger position for some time.
- Standing, walking, and doing some gentle stretches are recommended. Back extensions and side bending are examples.
- Core exercises can help and should also be incorporated into a regular physical exercise regimen.
- However, exercises after long or strenuous drives when the body is fatigued are not recommended, as intense exercise can lead to injury or worsening of back pain.
Pain Continues AfterIf there was a small/low amount of pain or if it was a pain-free experience then perhaps the driving tips helped. If the pain continues and there was no help with these driving tips, it might be time to see a doctor or chiropractor. Minor aches and pains can be expected, but if there is pain lasting longer than a few days or limits function, then seeking out medical advice is recommended.
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The information herein on "Driving Tips to Help Reduce Back Pain" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional or licensed physician and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.
Our information scope is limited to Chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, contributing etiological viscerosomatic disturbances within clinical presentations, associated somatovisceral reflex clinical dynamics, subluxation complexes, sensitive health issues, and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions.
We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from various disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system.
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Our office has reasonably attempted to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request.
We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez, DC, or contact us at 915-850-0900.
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