The good news is that the holidays are here, and that can mean a lot of fun and the pleasure of seeing loved ones. The bad news is that seeing those loved ones can often mean hours and hours in the car and/or on a plane. Even if you haven’t had a knee or shoulder issue (which can come with their own set of problems when you travel), you can still wind up in pain.
Help for preventing back pain
Sitting in those little airplane seats, sitting for long periods of time, carrying heavy bags all over, and then sleeping in a strange bed – it seems that back pain is inevitable when you travel, no matter how healthy and in-shape you are, and even if you aren’t prone to getting back aches! But don’t let back pain ruin your holidays. Try:
• Changing position. This isn’t always easy, especially if you are on an airplane. But making an effort to change position every 30 minutes can help. Giving yourself extra lumbar support can also help on an airplane – roll up a sweatshirt or use a water bottle right in the small of your back.
• Taking driving breaks. If your journey is by car, stop every hour or so to get out and walk around and have a good stretch.
• Managing stress. All on its own, stress can cause muscle tension and aches. Reduce your stress by doing things such as asking for help managing your bags at the airport and planning ahead – just getting to the airport early can greatly reduce your stress level!
• Making your bed more back-friendly. If you are staying at a family member’s house and the mattress they give you automatically inspires back pain, you may be able to make it more comfortable by propping up pillows under your knees (if you are a back sleeper) or putting a pillow between your knees (if you are a side sleeper).
If, when the holidays are all done with, you find yourself still sore, remember that you can contact Sports Occupational and Knee Surgery for a consultation. Call the office in San Antonio, TX, at (210) 696-9000 for an appointment today!