How to Reduce Pain When Traveling


If you’re like my family, you may be thinking about taking a trip for spring break when the kids are out of school, or you might be planning now for an extended summer vacation. Traveling is usually an incredible experience, regardless of your destination. The family bonding and memories you make are priceless. But traveling can be a little more challenging for those with some lingering pain issues in the back and neck. Whether making a long trip in a car or by plane, sitting in these small spaces for lengthy periods of time can compound any pain you may already have from spine-related issues. Next Level Wellness, an Irvine Chiropractic team, has some simple, easy ways you can ease the pain of travel on your back and neck.


Road Trippin’?


If you are embarking on a cross-country road trip or even taking a road trip up north, to Las Vegas, or maybe out to Arizona for spring training, there are steps you can take to ensure your time spent in the car is more comfortable. Many of us tend to slouch or sit too far forward when driving or lean to one side. Doing this can offset the natural alignment of your spine, and make your back feel stiff and sore.

Before you even start driving, make sure that your car seat and steering wheel are adjusted to allow for good alignment. If you are leaning too far forward to reach the wheel, move your seat up a few inches for a more natural seated position and to ensure that the length of the seat is supporting your back. Adjust the height of your steering wheel, too, to take pressure off of your arms and shoulders while your hands are on the wheel. Give yourself time to make these small adjustments so that you can find the combination that is most comfortable for your entire body! It can really make a difference in the overall alignment of your back. Need some extra support? Consider purchasing a car seat cover or cushion that can be placed over the driver’s seat. Many of these contain gel or memory foam to relieve pressure points and provide much-needed lumbar support – some versions are even heated, to soothe those sore muscles.


Flying the Friendly Skies?


So many of us frequently travel by air, and we all know that personal space on airplanes is becoming more and more scarce these days. The length of the plane ride, combined with the cramped seating conditions, can have a detrimental effect on your back, neck, and joints.

Make sure you have what you need to stay comfortable before you board the plane. Bring a travel pillow to support your neck – these are easy to carry on the plane with you and can be purchased virtually anywhere. A travel pillow will support your head and neck during air travel, and prevent you from getting a painful kink in your neck should you choose to take a nap in your seat. Consider bringing something with you to support your lower back, too. Most airplane seats are pretty hard and uncomfortable. Bring a small lumbar pillow that you can place against the seat and your lower back, to help add extra cushioning and encourage proper alignment.


Whether driving or flying, make sure you get up and move around!


Still experiencing back or neck pain before or after your trip? Our chiropractic team of wellness doctors, Vasili Gatsinaris, DC, QME, James Kim, DC, Adam Abulghualya, DC, BS, ART and Caprice Leonard, MA, ATC specialize in chiropractic and health and wellness care. Our Irvine chiropractic office is located near John Wayne Airport, convenient for people living in Newport Beach, Costa Mesa, Tustin, Santa Ana and other surrounding Orange County communities. To learn more about our variety of services or to schedule an appointment, take advantage of our Facebook new patient special and contact us or call 949-263-9003 today.


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