Keep Your Back Healthy in the Car
By Sara Butler
America is a land of cars, and Americans spend a lot of time in them. Whether it’s driving to work, driving the kids to school, driving to the store, or just taking a cruise around town, Americans drive an average of 29.2 miles per day according to AAA. Just think about how much time you spend in the car every day and you quickly realize the importance of caring for your spine while in the car. Here are a few tips from the chiropractors at The Joint to help!
Rush Hour Rambo
You spend a lot of time commuting back and forth, so care for your spine by:
- Relaxing – Make sure to keep the shoulders relaxed and in a neutral position. Your chin should be tucked just a little and during cold weather, take off your coat or jacket before driving. It’ll help keep your spine in a neutral position.
- Taking breaks – You need frequent breaks when in the car for long stretches. It’s tempting to push through, but taking some pressure off the spine by moving around regularly and stretching will work wonders.
- Adding lumbar support – If the car you drive doesn’t have lumbar support in the seat, add some extra. Roll up a towel or a shirt and place it between the lower back and the seat. This helps to support the natural curve of the spine.
- Losing the wallet – Men who keep their wallets in their back pockets need to remember to take them out before they sit down to drive. Sitting for long periods of time on a wallet can create joint dysfunctions and imbalances in the hips, causing back pain and even leg pain.
- Keeping things within easy reaching distance – Gum, sunglasses, tissues, or anything else you frequently reach for while behind the wheel should be kept in places you can easily get to while driving. Reaching for things or twisting takes your attention from the road and places pressure on the spine and the muscles that support it.
- Taking an ice pack – If you go on a long road trip, consider taking along a small cooler with an ice pack. That way you can treat aches and pains as they occur while you take breaks. It can make a world of difference when it comes to driving.
If you have more questions about staying healthy behind the wheel, ask a chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic how you can take better care of your spine while in the car.
To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Arvada, Colo.