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Impacts of Traveling for folks with Spinal conditions

dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 11,348
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:23 AM in Pain Management
Every once in a while we all need a wake up call!
I've been doing pretty good recently, I've started to increase my Aqua Therapy , walking some more (getting ready for an October trip to Italy), decreasing my medications, etc.
So, I have been pretty happy.
This weekend, we did a lot of driving. Yesterday it was two 3 hour trips in a span of less than 4 hours.
So today I am hurting! I've been doing a lot more stretching and I know I can't sit more than 20 minutes at a time at the computer.
I know this is just another one of those temporary flareups, but totally controllable.
But it is something to remind me, that even when things look good, we always have to remember what can trigger a flare up.
Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com


  • I'm sorry to hear about your flare up... I know traveling can really irritate the back

    Second... Italy!!! Wow!! That is so exciting!

    I'm pretty new to all of this stuff. Do you have any tips on how to avoid flare ups when traveling? I know if I have to drive for any long amount of time, my back and hips start to scream!
  • I know exactly what both of you are talking about! It even influences what vehicles we buy, they have to have to comfortable seats! It's hard enough for me to be the passenger but when I'm the driver, I just can't drive very far at all. Not a good subject for me, it's made such a huge difference in my life. Have a great time in Italy, I'll be wishing I was there while your gone!
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  • I HAVE to be in the drivers seat. I cant not handle being in the passenger seat. It seems that I get so much more achy if I am in the passenger. Whether its because my mind goes to my pain or the way I sit. I have no idea. I can only handle 20-30 minutes at a time too...but with two small children and the fact that I dont live close to anything, I always go over the time and become so agitated.

    Not to mention, my car is one of the most uncomfortable cars ever....I always wonder if I could convince my insurance company that they need to cover a new car for me?? Thoughts??
    lol. That would be nice wouldnt it?!?!

    Ron, I hope you feel better.
    I am going to San Diego in October and am doing the same as you - preparing!!!!

    Take Care.

  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 11,348
    Tips for Auto Traveling
    - Hopefully a comfortable seat that can be put in several positions
    - Stopping about every 60 minutes or sooner to get out, walk around and stretch a bit.
    - Make sure you have your medications with you
    - Try putting the seat down a bit and with a neck pillow try to relax
    - Stop again to get out
    - If you can (depending on medications) switch between driving and passenger
    - Provide something that will keep your mind up (but not distracted) For me, its some certain songs that Make
    me drive like 55! (Oh Sammy)
    - Stop again to get out

    Tips for Plane Traveling
    - If you can go First class, then do it. Our trip to Italy is from AMX mileage cards and I am trying to negotiate
    moving up to first class. There you have so much more
    - I like a seat in the back of the plane. This way I can get and move around with out disturbing anyone
    - Have you medications with you and not in your luggage
    - Bring a long a few of those quick ice packs, the ones you
    can smack to get them to be cold
    - Stop again, walk around , but DO NOT get off or out of the plane

    There is no one secret tip... But if I was to single one out, it would be getting up and moving around
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • cuz my husband is a fast driver and makes me nervous...maybe I just prefer being 'in charge' of how fast I go, and just how fast I take the curves.

    Get me in heavy traffic in an area I don't know I prefer to lay down the seat and let hubby drive. :)

    Mostly I just stay home tho to be honest. :|

    Like many, travel is hard. problems with 3 areas of my spine, I tense up quickly.

    My hubby's dream was to buy an RV when he retired and travel cross country..me and my bad spine sure wrecked that one for him. :(

    Good tips here! Great website. Thanks! :)
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  • I had a business trip to Hawaii in March, which was about 5 months after my lami, and I was already in PM for isolation of what bwcame the fusion.

    My company is cheap, so yhey booked me in coach for the 11 hours of flight time with 3 changes of aircraft along the way. I missed the first day of meetings as I could not move. That was pleasant.

    For the return flight, I called the airline, was able to get a non-stop and moved to first class; I slept all the way home..... the differnces are too much to even try and relate.

    Have a great trip, man.....
  • 4 hours away for the birth of my new grandson. I have a terrible time sitting that long! What I do is wear my back brace for the trip (this helps a lot) plus I am going two days before the birth so that I can recover somewhat before spending the day at the hospital. You have to be in tip top shape to be a grandma you know! :))(
  • I get them all the time and drive my doc nutty. When I travel as passenger, I keep a king size pillow in the car, and lay back. Maybe you can travel with an ice packs in a cooler for extended trips. I haven't been on one since my fusion, but when I do, I'll try that (I just came up with that idea).
    I hope you get to feeling better. It's so tempting to overdo it when you feel decent. Take care
  • Piece of cake Ron =)) =)) =))

    If I focus on the destination, put on my iPod and tune out the world, it's not a problem.

    You can do it!!!
  • Hey Ron,

    Not sure if I caught you in time, but thought I'd post just in case.

    When we went to Ireland back in Oct. of last year, I bought some of those "squishy" pillows. The ones with the little micro beads in them. They are so compactable, they can be shoved into most carry-ons and they won't break or lose their loft. I also wore the most comfortable clothes I could, without actually wearing sweats, and shoes that I could just slip on and off, so I could remove them easily in the airport as well as on the plane.

    We were allowed to take one carry on piece and a purse or back-pack. So, I would highly recommend a pack or some kind of bag that you can keep down in your seating area as well as the one you stow in the overhead compartment. That way you have your passport, meds, ice pack/heat wraps, books/magazines, etc. at hand, without having to get up all the time to get something that is above your head and harder to reach. I know for me, reaching up over my head can really cause a flare-up. I also like my meds that much closer to me.

    Have a terrific time on your trip. I hope you have good weather and comfy accomodations. Don't forget your outlet adaptors! If you don't already have them, you can get them at most luggage retailers and some hardware stores. We hope to visit Italy some time in the future. I'm sure we will come back with more than a few additional pounds! LOL

    Take care and have a safe trip. I'll be sending out good vibes. Mitzi
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