Updated: Aug 9, 2022
Tips for Traveling with Joint Pain As we approach the holiday season, many people will be traveling to parts of the country with different weather. If you suffer from joint pain, the trip and the change of climate can take a toll on you. Airports, train stations, and bus stations must provide accommodations for people with disabilities. If this is your first Thanksgiving with an injury, your chiropractor can connect you with resources that inform you of your rights. But regardless, everyone should understand these essential steps for preventing their muscles from seizing up during trips.
Posture in Vehicles People are generally advised to get up and move about once every thirty minutes. Traveling makes this inconvenient, but if you’re driving or riding in a car, take advantage of rest stops at least once every ninety minutes. People who are seated should keep their feet level, with drivers using the cruise control as much as possible. They should also regularly change the position of their hands on the steering wheel and keep their chairs pushed back enough to stretch their legs. It’s recommended that passengers keep their heads up while seated, instead of looking down at a screen or book. Although travelers on an airplane or bus don’t get as many opportunities to stretch while in transit, they can still do stretching exercises before their departure. But this is not the time to try a new stretch they never attempted previously. Air passengers might want to pick short connecting flights so they’ll have more opportunities to stretch. If you do this, remember to ask how far you’ll have to walk between terminals and whether you can be driven between gates.
Assistive Devices Chiropractors commonly encourage people to avoid carrying heavy objects whenever possible. Ideally, travelers will avoid adding more back strain by using pull-out handles and wheels on their carry-on luggage. People sitting for long periods are also advised to wear neck pillows and to have a small, cylindrical pillow in the small of their backs. Plane and train passengers can improvise a cylindrical pillow by rolling up their blanket. Travelers should also wear supportive shoes and clothing that allows their blood to circulate without restriction, or supportive braces, as advised by their chiropractor. If renting a car, they may also ask about having the seatbelt cushioned.
At Your Destination Your holiday destination might have less sunlight this time of year than you are used to. Remember that you need fifteen minutes of sun a day to produce enough vitamin D to absorb calcium. Travelers benefit from heatbands if they’re going somewhere cool or damp. Maintain any recommended chiropractic regimen of low-impact range-of-motion exercises, and eat enough produce to sustain your nutrition. Those with inflammatory conditions should avoid excess sugar and alcohol, but favor olive oil and cruciferous vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, and kale.