The Woes of Summer Travelling
The summer is an opportune time for extended family vacations, and overwhelming driving distances.
While many fantasize longingly about their future summer travels, this can be a stressful season in terms of activating stress hormones, muscle tension, and overall pain and discomfort.
Whether you are driving cross country, or reluctantly visiting your in laws, you should prioritize your well being and physical comfort.
Pain is often a telling sign of over exertion, and summer vacations can prove burdensome to the average individual.
If you want to feel energized and healthy during your summer driving trips, follow the pain management tips listed below.
Conquering Pain This Summer
#1 Pain management foods can benefit summer travels
Such foods include, but are not limited to, ginger, cherries, oranges nuts, turmeric, coffee, peppermint and salmon.
Ginger is a wondrous root that contains a delightful fusion of varied healing properties. For example, it is often ingested to treat conditions such as motion sickness.
It also contains inflammatory properties that mitigate pain. Cherries and turmeric also have anti-inflammatory properties, and can reduce swelling and pain associated with arthritis, as well as other inflammatory conditions.
Coffee constricts blood vessels and reduces the transmission of pain messages from the site of the pain to your brain.
Furthermore, peppermint infuses your body with a calming effect that relaxes muscles, while salmon has been said to treat pain with the same potency of ibuprofen.
And finally, nuts contain high levels of B6 (which reduce pain), which oranges help combat inflammation.
#2 Pressure points are a highly effective sources of pain management
Various pressure points throughout the body lead to a notable decrease in pain within corresponding areas.
While the basis of this technique remains fundamentally unclear, it is highly effective, and has been upheld in eastern cultures for ages.
Therefore, research pressure points that correspond with the site of pain in your body.
#3 Pace yourself as much as possible and mitigate stress in advance by planning your trip accordingly
You may even consider alternating driving responsibilities with another individual. This is especially imperative because stressful situations often induce contractions in the neck muscles, and this elevates tension and muscle pain. Furthermore, pain and tension can also increase in other regions of your body.
#4 Music is a therapeutic tool that mollifies many disruptive, painful conditions
It is used for meditative purposes, and can factor into your pain management regimen this summer.
If for some reason you begin to experience pain or discomfort, consider turning on your favorite music in order to relax the fibers of your muscles.
Peaceful music is preferable, as highly paced music may increase your sympathetic immune response, and therefore, amplify many of your relayed pain signals from the site of pain, to your brain.
The sympathetic immune system fires in response to danger or stressful situations, leading to muscle contractions, constricted pupils, and elevated heart rate, etc.
#5 Consider engaging in meditative practices prior to beginning your summer drive
Meditation has been scientifically proven to decrease the onset of stress. And as noted, stress is correlated with muscle pain and tension in the shoulder, neck and back regions of the body.
#6 Ensure that you have a comfortable seat to travel in
If you have a well cushioned, ergonomic car seat, then you are certainly in luck. However, if your seat exerts pressure and discomfort onto your muscles, then you should consider purchasing a car cushion to better your travelling experience.
#7 In some cases, a driver may suffer from a preexisting condition that results in pain, tension and inflammation
In the following course of treatment has been prescribed by your doctor, consider incorporating ibuprofen into your medical regimen during the trip.
Furthermore, consider engaging in some vague form of rehabilitative therapy or massage prior to the trip-if this applies to your recovery regimen.
Many people suffer from pain inducing conditions such as fibromyalgia, CRPS, kyphosis, cervicalgia, and much worse in some cases. Therefore, anti-inflammatory medication may be imperative in certain contexts.
#8 Prolonged sitting also has a tendency to heighten pain
For this reason, you should take frequent breaks at rest stops, and walk around in order to increase your blood flow.
People who sit for extended periods of time will suffer from decreased circulation, which can lead to nutritional and oxygen deprivation in body parts lacking blood flow.
This can cause muscle tension, stiffness, and pain, as well. During your breaks, you should consider doing simple stretches in order to promote more muscle flexibility, and alleviate any repressed pain or tension.