Thursday, June 11, 2015

Traveling with a bad back

Millions of people have back trouble. And millions of people also want to travel.

Daveed Frazier, MS, an orthopedic spine surgeon at the Atlantic Spine Center, says travel can be hard on your spine. You have to be mindful of your back:

Bend at the knees, using leg muscles to pick up luggage.

Avoid twisting to grab a kid dashing off or a bag to one side of you.

Carry shoulder bags on alternative shoulders.

Rent a pushcart!

Check in curbside.

You may also be in a car this summer. In a car or plane, use lumbar support on your lower back, even a rolled-up blanket.

Use an inflatable travel pillow to avoid neck strain.

Get up frequently and move.

If you can pack your own pillow.

What do you do if your back does flare up?

Apply a cold pack--even a baggie of ice for 10-15 minutes. Alternate with hot--packa hot water bottle.

Take an NSAID--these are over the counter.

Wear comfortable shoes.

If something hurts on me, and things do, I whine a lot. This is optional.

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