Pain doesn't have to hinder your vacation

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PHOENIX - Vacation season is here and if you have back or leg pain, traveling can be torture as sitting for long hours can really make pain worse.

Pain doesn't have to hinder your travel plans, if you take steps to manage your pain before you head off.

Dr. Cecil Graham with AZ Pain Centers suggests when you are driving stop every 1.5 hours to walk around. If you are traveling by plane, you can get up and walk around a bit after the fasten seat belt signed has been turned off.

When sitting for long periods of time there is a component of restricting blood flow but there are also mechanical issues. Whenever you are sitting still, anything along the spine that creates pressure can be painful.

Many things can happen along the spine from a bulging disk that can push back or a herniated disk. Any of those things that put pressure on the nerve can effect the distribution of nerve flow and lead to pain.

Many patients Dr. Graham knows choose not to go on a trip because of the pain, but he said that doesn't have to be the case.

He said this type of problem happens with a lot of patients because pain effects their activity of daily living.

Dr. Graham makes the analogy that it is like restricting the flow of water through a hose, when you put pressure on it water can't move through it. The same thing happens if you put acute pressure on a nerve, leading to a mechanical irritation and causing all sorts of circulation problems.

At AZ Pain Centers their non-steroidal treatment goes to the underlying cause of the pain to find relief.

Pain is generated through an inflammatory response so the non-steroidal treatment goes to the source of that inflammation and is treated with an anti- inflammatory compound.

Managing pain along the sciatic nerve is pain free for the most part.

If you are someone who has a small issue go in before the pain exacerbates from an acute to chronic pain.

Don't wait too long, as Dr. Graham said sooner is better so you are not putting off your summer vacation.