Use These Tips to Protect Your Back While Traveling

Summer is getting closer and closer, and many people in Webster, Texas, and the surrounding areas are ready for a vacation. However, your travel plans can easily be hindered by back pain without the proper pain management techniques. At Houston Physicians’ Hospital, we understand that everyone wants a pain-free vacation, so we’ve listed some tips to help you protect your back while traveling:


  1. Divide Your Luggage

Instead of packing all of your vacation items into one bag, try dividing your items into 2 or 3 smaller, lighter bags. According to the Scandinavian Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine, heavy lifting was one of the most commonly stated causes of lower back pain (1). Packing separate bags allows you to pack whatever you may need for a trip, without causing one bag to become too heavy and increase your risk for back pain.


  1. Avoid Twisting When Lifting Luggage

According to the medical journal Spine, twisting motions are significantly related to back pain (2). When lifting heavy luggage, replace a twisting motion with a pivot. This allows your whole body to move, reducing the amount of strain placed on your back and reducing the risk for injury.


  1. Bring an OTC Medication as a Backup

If you’re prescription medication runs out, you don’t want to be stuck with pain during your trip. Bring an Over-the-Counter medication, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen to help reduce pain in the event you are left without your prescription. However, be sure to speak with your local pain management doctor to ensure these medications are safe for you to use.


  1. Get Up and Stretch

If you are traveling by plane, get up and stretch once the pilot has stated it is safe to move around. Plane rides often involve long periods of sitting still, which can mean bad news for your back.  According to the medical journal Spine, prolonged sitting in a constrained posture increases the risk for back pain (3). Getting up and moving around can help relieve the back from being confined to one posture for extended periods of time.


  1. Wear Slip-On Shoes

According to the medical journal Occupational Medicine, frequently bending over shows significant potential for contributing to back pain (4).  Avoid this by wearing slip on shoes. These shoes can be easily taken off after a long day of walking without the need to bend over and potentially make your back pain worse.


Vacation is a time to relax and enjoy yourself, not deal with back pain. These simple tips can help keep your back pain-free when traveling. For expert back pain treatment in Webster, Texas, and the surrounding areas, give the Spine Solutions Center at Houston Physicians’ Hospital a call at 832-340-2134.