For people that experience sciatica there are some things you can do to reduce the sciatic pain while driving. The following tips will help you to tackle longer distances with less discomfort. Here’s are three top tips for sciatica pain relief while driving.
Take regular breaks
It seems an obvious one but when we go on road trips we’re so often consumed with getting to our destination at a particular time that we’ll neglect the comfort of the journey itself. It’s important that you schedule regular times to stop the car and get out so you can have a decent stretch and ideally a little walk around.
Incorporate this into other essential reasons to stop like getting fuel, bathroom breaks, or needing to get food and drink. If necessary, leave home earlier to give yourself ample time to rest while you’re on the move.
Invest in some equipment
Spending a few extra pounds buying the right equipment can take the misery out of a journey quicker than you would expect. There are a wide variety of products specifically designed to help manage and minimise sciatica pain while driving.
Specialist products that have been developed for use in the car need to be lightweight and easily portable, as well as having a smaller footprint to fit more comfortably in the tighter space of a car seat. They are a comparatively small investment compared to the improved comfort they provide.
The right seat position for sciatic pain while driving
The correct seat position for relieving sciatic pain while driving is something most people overlook. One of the most common mistakes people make is with saloon cars with sports type bucket seats. A common feature of this type of seat is for the back of the seat to be low and the front of the seat to be high to help hold you in place hence the name bucket seat. Unfortunately for someone with sciatica this sitting position does tow things that are not useful for someone with sciatica.
- It creates more flexion (bend) in the lower back, which is the most likely root cause of the sciatica symptoms, and
- It stretches the sciatica nerve more than sitting in a normal seat would, while you have pressure on the it.
So, the thing to do is to adjust the car seat to achieve maximum comfort for sciatica think hips high, knees low. Think armchair and not bucket seat. Taking time with a little trial and error is required to find the most comfortable position, but with a little effort this is achievable. The new seat position sometimes take a little getting used but it will be worth it to help relieve the sciatic pain while driving.
Finally the last thing to consider is having the right car is the first place. We are not suggesting you go out and but a new car, but for people that experience back problems and have had sciatica it is worth taking time to consider the seat position when purchasing a new car. A low slung, small three door hatchback may not be the right choice for you. You want something with reasonable ground clearance which you can get in and out of comfortably, and something that has a high boot to make getting luggage and bags out much easier.
When inside, a supportive and adjustable seat is essential, as is an adjustable steering wheel. If you can’t get comfortable sitting still, you’ve no hope of being comfortable on the move.
Hopefully the tips above provide plenty of food for thought and lead to more comfortable journeys on the road.