Take A Driving Break And Move Around
The spine enables your mobility. When you sit in one position in the vehicle, it will make your back muscles stiff, leading to potential muscle spasm and achiness. If you can, take a break from driving, preferably every 30 minutes. Safely pull over to the side of the road and get out of your vehicle so you can stretch and move around, which will stimulate blood circulation to your lower back.
Try and move a little in your seat in between these driving breaks. Even moving and stretching for 10 seconds is better than sitting still. At least adjust your seat and every 20 minutes, change your position. Stretch your hamstring muscles and keep the blood flowing by pumping your ankles. Any movement you can do in your vehicle safely will help.
Tips To Prevent Sciatica And Piriformis Syndrome While Driving
Here are 8 Tips To Prevent Sciatica and Piriformis Syndrome While DrivingIf you want to prevent sciatica while driving the following tips are essential because traveling with sciatica can be excruciating.The sciatic nerve is the longest nerve in the body. It actually starts as five nerve roots in the lower back.If you are experiencing sciatic pain that starts in the lower back you have sciatica.Deep in your butt right where you sit these nerve roots meet to form the sciatic nerve. In the same spot, there is a muscle called the piriformis.At the place the sciatic nerve forms in front of the piriformis it is the thickest nerve in the body.When you have sciatic pain that starts in the butt it is called piriformis syndrome. I think it is very important to know the difference.
Table of ContentsTip #8 – The Cabbie Solution
And it is equally important that you know what you are dealing with.Traveling from the lower back to the foot there are many places along the sciatic nerve that can suffer.When the sciatic nerve is most unhappy your foot can go numb which we hope to avoid at all costs.And in the context of this post, car seats are not well designed especially for womens bodies.Honestly, the design of car seats doesnt matter for most people. But for those who are in pain, getting into a car seat can be like getting into an iron maiden.I learned about sciatica and piriformis syndrome intimately when my body broke down and I went through extensive physical therapy.
Sciatica Pain Relief While Sitting: A Surprisingly Simple Natural Remedy
Theres no way around it were living increasingly sedentary lives. That should come as no surprise in a world where you can order groceries, call friends, call a cab, and get in a full days work, all without leaving your chair.
Sitting down for long periods of time has become virtually unavoidable. And with sitting, unfortunately, can also come back and sciatica pain. As harmless as it seems, the simple act of sitting can cause excruciating pain, and nerve pain is no fun. Lets find out why that happens and what you can do about sciatica pain from sitting.
Recommended Reading: Tizanidine For Sciatica Nerve Pain
How To Manage Pain
To relieve sciatic pain, try to avoid sitting or lying down for long periods. Take short walks and stay active.
If a person has to sit down for work or school, they should make sure they have a decent chair and good posture. People should also try to avoid driving long distances.
If the pain is severe, lying down with a heat or ice pack for a few minutes may help. Over-the-counter or prescription pain relief medication can also temporarily ease discomfort.
Find Your Threshold And Accordingly Set Breaks
Each person in this world has a threshold after which it becomes unnatural for the body to continue to work. A typist knows how many words can be typed comfortably in an hour. Similarly, a runner knows the distance to be covered without stressing the body in an hour.
Even you should know the limitations and capabilities of your body for driving. You need to know how far you can drive before sciatica symptoms flareup. When you are aware of these details, it becomes easier for you to take a break just before the flareup.
Taking such a break helps in preventing those debilitating symptoms due to which driving and sciatica tend to becomemutually exclusive for most drivers. Taking a break does not necessarily mean to halt and move out of the vehicle while in the middle of the journey.
You can even spend a couple of minutes relaxing your back, arms, and legs by taking your head back and legs in the front for increasing blood circulation.
Don’t Miss: Why Do People Slit Their Wrists
Dont Let Your Routine Veer Too Far From Home
When traveling, its easy to let the good lifestyle habits you practice at home slide. A healthy diet, sound sleep, and plenty of physical activity are sciaticas natural enemiesmake sure to bring these healthy practices with you to your destination.
Use the same good sense when you travel that you would at home with getting plenty of rest, drinking plenty of water, and trying not to overeat, Dr. Hayden advised. If anything, you will need more rest when you are traveling, so take that into consideration. Walk, stretch, and stay mobile.
3 Tips for Managing Sciatic Pain When Traveling. The Spine Institute. https://www.laspine.com/traveling-with-sciatica/. Accessed June 21, 2019.
Pastides C. Tips for Travelling with Sciatica or a Slipped Disc. Staysure. https://www.staysure.co.uk/2019/06/travelling-with-sciatica/. Accessed June 21, 2019.
Enjoy the Journey: Avoid Travel Aches and Pains This Summer. Newswise. https://www.newswise.com/articles/view/714032/. Accessed June 21, 2019.
My Back Pain and Sciatica Travel Tips. Patients Lounge. https://patientslounge.com/pain/back_pain_and_sciatica_travel_tips. Accessed June 21, 2019.
Pay Attention To Your Position
Your posture matters when youre driving. Much like when youre standing, sitting in a chair, or sleeping, maintaining the correct posture can help you combat discomfort and prevent symptoms from flaring up while traveling. Use your backrest and decrease the flexion angle of your upper body to reduce spinal loads while driving, especially when youre on the road for a prolonged period of time.
Also, make sure to sit up straight with your knees higher than your hips, and adjust your back support to approximately 110 degrees to the seat surface so youre not hunching forward in your vehicle. In addition, its a good idea to avoid sitting on anything thats in your back pocket like a phone or wallet, because this correlates with increased pain and piriformis syndrome,3 a known cause of sciatica symptoms that are caused by nerve compression around your hip.
Recommended Reading: Tramadol For Sciatica Pain
How To Avoid Sciatica In The First Place
Double board-certified in pain medicine and anesthesiology, Dr. Phillip Lim advises patients in his offices in Orange County and Downtown Los Angeles, California, to practice certain techniques to reduce the risk for sciatic nerve pain, such as:
- Practice good posture while standing, sitting, and even sleeping to minimize pressure on your lower backpressure.
- Lose weight, if overweight, to lighten the pressure on your nerve.
- Stop smoking, which can advance disc problems.
- Avoid sitting for long stretches of time.
- Lift with bent legs and straight back.
In addition, be sure to get enough Vitamin B12, which helps synthesize the myelin sheath surrounding your nerves.
Be Aware Of Your Driving Position
Even without sciatica or other types of back problems, anyone could experience soreness or discomfort from sitting behind the wheel for a long drive. Passengers can feel it too, especially if the cars seat doesnt match your body built or figure.
One way to avoid fatigue, soreness, or discomfort while driving or sitting on a car is to sit comfortably. Yes, the secret is to be aware of your driving position and find out the most comfortable set up for your body.
You probably wont be able to determine that in one sitting. Start by trying to pinpoint what causes your sciatica to flare up and adjust your seat the next time you ride. If it didnt work, make necessary adjustments, and play around various positions again. Just make sure to do it when you are not driving. But, keep in mind not to change everything at once because a new position could make your sciatica worse. Let your body adjust slowly.
Recommended Reading: Can Blueberries Give You Diarrhea
Posted In: Driving Advice
Driving with any kind of back pain is a tough task but those who suffer from sciatica are truly in for a difficult time. Sciatica is a common and frustrating condition, causing uncomfortable pain for many and is especially difficult to deal with when behind the wheel. With the pain shooting down your leg from your lower back, operating a car isnt easy but some things can be done to help you cope. If you are looking to head on the road after buying temp car insurance, but suffer from sciatica, this article is for you. This guide presents some top tips to help, offering advice on everything from adjusting your driving position to products that can help.
Use Sciatica Pillow For Driving
While the modern vehicles come equipped with comfortable seats, they may yet be unable to prevent soreness after driving. So, how do then driving and sciatica go peacefully together? Well, it is easy!
Just make your seat ergonomic. No, there is no need to buy a special seat or a lush seat cover. Rather, it suffices to get a sciatica driving pillow or a pain relief cushion. These are economical options to make your driving more relaxed while alleviating pressure between the back and the seat.
Most seat cushions are made to improve blood circulation to the legs and evenly span the weight of your body while alleviating stress on the sciatica nerve.
Don’t Miss: How To Stop Stomach Pain From Eating Pineapple
Bring A Cold Or Heat Pack
Bring along a heat pack or cold pack with you, depending on the one that works best for your back pain. You can make a cold pack by wrapping an ice pack in a towel, or you can purchase an ice pack you can keep in your vehicle. You can plug some heat packs into your cars 12-volt auxiliary socket to provide you with continuous heat. Or, use your heated seats if you have them.
If youre still experiencing back pain while you drive, stop to stretch, then when youre sitting, place the ice pack against your back. The ice pack numbs the area and reduces inflammation, which relieves back pain.
Avoid Putting Hard Objects In Your Back Pocket
If you have cell phones, keys, wallet, or any hard object in your back pocket, then you may be one step away from a sciatica flare-up. Why? Any hard object can aggravate the muscle called the piriformis muscle, which is located deep in your buttocks. This muscle is near the sciatic nerve, that is why any pressure can result in impingement of the nerve, ensuing pain.
Read Also: Why Does Pineapple Make My Stomach Hurt
Best Stretches For Sciatica
If youre able to release some of thetension in your iliacus and psoas muscles, you give the sciatic nerve an opportunity to heal. The Hip Hook is designed specifically for this purpose. This prolonged pressure technique is the golden ticket to long term change in the holding patterns of this muscle, however, stretching can be a great way to prevent and soften these effects in the moment.
Since piriformis tightness develops as a result of fighting against the tension in the iliacus and psoas, stretching this area can relieve the tension of those muscles and therefore reduce pressure on the sciatic nerve. First, you want to address the hip flexors with a lunge stretch as that is the hidden cause of sciatic tightness. Then address the effect by stretching the piriformis with a figure 4 stretch. Holding each stretch for at least 30 seconds will help soften the hold that these muscles have on you!
Choosing The Right Car For People With Back Pain
Choosing the right vehicle for your back is very important. Follow these guidelines to help with your search.
- Look for a car you can get in and out of easily without aggravating your back pain or sciatica symptoms too much.
- A tilted steering wheel may make it easier for you to get in and out of your car with back issues.
- Power steering is wonderful and will help you a lot if you have upper or lower back pain and sciatica.
- Check out the seat controls and test just how adjustable they really are.
- Examine if the seats have heat controls. If they do, this can be great to ease aching back muscles. If not, heat pads do as good a job.
- Inspect the boot or trunk. Test how easy it is for you to open and close it and lift items in and out of it. Shallow and flat is best.
- Check your reach to all the controls. You should not be straining, stretching or twisting to reach them.
- It is essential you take a thorough test drive to ensure the vehicle meets all of your needs. Get in and out of the car several times, and drive it on different road types if possible. Check how good the suspension is.
Risks of Driving
Do not drive if you have been advised against it by your doctor and/or are taking meds which adversely affect your abilities.
Read Also: Nausea And Neck Pain
Get Out And Move Around
Sitting in one position in a car will stiffen up your back muscles and can lead to achiness and possibly muscle spasm. Everyone should ideally take at least a 15-minute break for every 2 hours of driving. If youre prone to back pain, you may want to take breaks more frequently, such as every 30 to 60 minutes.
Contact Spine Institute Of North America For Your Back Pain
The Spine Institute of North America knows how disruptive your back pain can be, and is here to help eliminate the pain. We understand how back pain can impact an individuals daily routine and burden your life. We dedicate ourselves to getting to know you and understand your pain. Were committed to restoring your quality of life.
Our spine specialists offer the least invasive procedures to relieve painful spinal conditions, so you can recover and be back to driving and living in comfort within a few days. It can be overwhelming trying to decide between interventional procedures, physicians or minimally invasive spinal surgery that might or might not even help with your pain.
Weve had many satisfied patients walk into our office with excruciating pain, and now are back to driving and living pain-free. Contact Spine Institute of North America today to schedule your appointment.
This content was medically reviewed by Baher Yanni, M.D, on May 22nd, 2019.
Recommended Reading: Iv Lidocaine Side Effects
How Do You Stop Sciatica Pain When Driving
What are some ways to relieve sciatic nerve pain while youâre driving? When I drive long distances, I get really terrible pains in my back. Iâm not sure if I need to change my posture, adjust my seat, or do something else, but I would love some tips to make this stop happening!
- Sit closer to the steering wheel so you donât have to reach as far to grab the wheel.
- Purchase a special cushion designed to help with sciatica pain.
- Place a small pillow or rolled-up towel between your lower back and your seat.
- Try to keep your legs below or level with your hips.
- If you can, take regular breaks while youâre driving to stretch and walk around a bit.
Immediate Action Required: Go To A& e Or Call 999 If You:
- have sciatica on both sides
- have weakness or numbness in both legs that’s severe or getting worse
- have numbness around or under your genitals, or around your bottom
- find it hard to start peeing, cannot pee or cannot control when you pee and this is not normal for you
- do not notice when you need to poo or cannot control when you poo and this is not normal for you
These could be symptoms of a serious back problem that needs to be treated in hospital as soon as possible.
Also Check: Pineapple Causes Stomach Pain
What Are Your Goals For This Surgery
Making a decision about sciatica surgery when you are in a lot of pain can be tough. Be sure to discuss with your surgeon the post-surgery goals, especially those around pain and activity. Are you expecting to go back to work and the gym in a week? Are you hoping the pain will be gone entirely and for good?
Although most people experience up to 90 percent improvement in their pain levels after a sciatica surgery, no doctor can guarantee this. Numbness may still be present after the surgery, and there is always a chance of sciatica coming back at another vertebra.
Depending on the type of sciatica surgery, most people are walking the next day, and full recovery typically takes two to four weeks. Minimally invasive surgery usually means faster recovery, but if the surgery involves more than one vertebra or disc, your back may take longer to heal.
Keep Up With Car Maintenance
Its not only about choosing the right carregular maintenance plays an important role too! Keeping up with routine maintenance on your vehicle can make for a smoother ride to protect your spine from jarring bumps in the road that can increase pain. Taking steps such as replacing worn shocks and tires as needed and having your cars alignment checked will minimize any shaking or vibrations while driving.
Driving can be a real pain in the lower back when youre a sciatica sufferer. However, by following these tips and taking the right precautions, you can minimize your symptoms and avoid pain flare-upseach and every time you hit the road.
While this blog is meant to provide you with information you need to make an informed decision about your treatment options, it is not intended to replace professional medical care or provide medical advice. If you have any questions about the Barricaid, please call or see your doctor, who is the only one qualified to diagnose and treat your spinal condition. As with any surgical procedure, you should select a doctor who is experienced in performing the specific surgery that you are considering.
If you have any questions about Barricaid, you may ask your doctor. For additional information, please visit. For complete risk-benefit information:.
You May Like: Tramadol For Sciatica