If you suffer from back pain while driving, the road will seem to never end! Give your back the relief it needs when you follow FleetServ’s suggestions for easing your painful back.
Start with Good Posture
We all know we should use good posture, but it’seasier said than done when you’re trucking long hauls.
Achieving good posture at the wheel is possible, and here are a few things totry:
- Firm lumbar support
- Donut pillows to aid downward pressure
- The correct seat and steering wheel positions. Your elbows, waist, and knees should be close to 90 degree angles. Avoid reaching.
- Tucking your chin slightly to keep your head level
- Your headrest set to the middle of your head, no more than four inches away
- Cruise control so you can set both feet on the ground.
Good posture is the groundwork to keeping a healthy spine. No matter what other tool or technique you employ, bad posture will always worsen back pain.
Stretch, Stretch, and Stretch Some More
Your body’s muscles and ligaments are all connected, so if your upper back is sore, you also need to stretch your neck and shoulders. If your lower back aches, you also need to stretch your buttocks and the front of your hips.
At your next trucking rest stop, try these three stretches that are designed to loosen your upper, middle, and lower back:
- Holding onto something for support, rest the ankle of your right leg on top of your left knee and crouch down. Hold for a few seconds and then bow over your crossed leg. Repeat on the other side.
- Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and reach for your toes, bending your knees. Grab your left leg below the knee with your right hand and twist open toward the sky, reaching your left arm up. Repeat on the other side.
- Sit on the ground with your legs out in front of you, knees up and feet on the ground. Hug your upper legs while tucking your chin to your chest. While still hugging and tucking, slowly slide your feet forward so your legs straighten and your arms are resting on the ground. Take turns pushing one leg straighter than the other.
There are many other great stretches to help you loosen your tight back, but if you only have time for a few, these will help a lot.
Cool It Down or Heat It Up
If you are suffering from inflammation, applying a cold pack can help. If you just want some soothing relief, use a heating pad. Sometimes alternating between cold and hot can helpease the pain even more.
Oftentimes, muscle spasms and cramps are due to dehydration. When you drink too much coffee and soda, or too many energy drinks, you’re withholding the one thing your body needs most in life, water.Be sure you’re drinking plenty of good, old-fashioned H2O!
When Necessary, Medicate
When good posture, stretching, cold or heat, and hydration aren’t enough, over-the-counter pain relievers can helpease your pain. Be sure you have them within easy reach while driving.
If you have persistent or major back pain, you may need to see a doctor who can prescribe a muscle relaxant or other prescription strength pain reliever.
Take Care of Your Back and It Will Take Care of You
When your back hurts, trucking can be overwhelming and miserable. When you employ the above suggestions, your body will thank you.