Back Problems and Other Ijuries Related to Truck Driving

Discussion in 'Driver Health' started by Cymerax, Mar 7, 2007.

  1. Cymerax

    Cymerax Bobtail Member

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    OK, read on another post (not in Driver's Health Corner unfortunately) about a driver who became disabled after driving for many years and now suffers from a severe/chronic lower back/spinal condition due to driving too many hours. Apparently he attributes this injury to driving too many consecutive hours and not stopping often enough to walk/stretch. (Found the post here http://www.thetruckersreport.com/tr...kers-advice/16748-first-protect-yourself.html )

    This is actually something that I've been worried about and now that I'm aware that this can happen I will do whatever's necessary to avoid it. But this brings up the question of what other occupational health problems are common in the trucking industry? Of course obesity and generally poor physical condition is a common topic and obviously ties in with poor diet and/or insufficient exercise.

    But these problems aside, as well as discounting all types of injuries that can happen from accidents (and as such not easily preventable), I'm mainly concerned with those "hidden" or not so obvious health problems that truck drivers must deal with most frequently, as well as how they might be prevented or at least minimized?

    Thanks in advance :biggrin_25514: for any info you experienced Truckers can give ;?D
     
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  3. Alaskan

    Alaskan Light Load Member

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    need to be aware of varicose veins and edema to. Edema can be treated with compression socks or stockings, depending on area that the Edema is in.
     
  4. Cymerax

    Cymerax Bobtail Member

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    Oops, forgot to ask, concerning the back problem thing, is there any kind of back brace that can help to reduce these kinds of injuries, or perhaps a type of seat cushion (electric heat, vibrating, etc.) which can help?
     
  5. Alaskan

    Alaskan Light Load Member

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    I would think from my limited experience....proper posture while driving, and walking around when stopped. The walking around is good for you, also stretching, but I don't know if it will stop you from getting a bad back, we will see lol, seems like whatever profession I would like to do, there are negatives that come with. My dad was a construction work for a couple of years, and a miner for many till 94 when he started his own sign making company, from all his hard labor tho, he is surely paying for it with bad knees and sore and stiff back. He is 50 now and it seems to be getting worse, he sleeps better now because he bought one of those sleep number beds, the ones that you can control the softness or hardness of the mattress with a remote. I would speak with a chiropractic doctor, they may have tips, and more importantly educated tips.
     
  6. MickeyFIN

    MickeyFIN Light Load Member

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    Exercise&StrecthingX3, Also you might look into special Truck seats from makers like Recaro and such.
    Sure they sound expensive but not...as of the poor ergonomics of US trucks compared to European equivalents (which some has Recaro or equivalent seats standard) I´m thinkin gettin a US truck but equipping it with Recaros etc to get the best of both worlds operating it in Europe.

    No Brace is going to help you IF you Ain´t got the Muscles to support your backbone (Stomach and bck)...and braces just make them muscles weaker.
    Move around a bit and change seating position while driving so that you don´t become too stationary.
    I went to a chiropractician a while back to get my ribs opened as I felt a constant pain in the neck and shoulderblade area.

    Thought I had a backproblem but not...just stuck ribs which thenagain makes breathing not 100% and same goes for neck are bloodcirculation which affects your little brain and spine.
    And Yes Boxing is the best exercise to open your ribs/shoulders/neck.
    Start with a Heavy Bag....
     
    phoenixAM Thanks this.
  7. lil daddy

    lil daddy Light Load Member

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    Cymerax, This is an excellent question as I feel that most truckers are un-aware of what OTR trucking can and will do to your body if you don't take certain measures to prevent it.

    Most otr truckers lead sedintary lives which encourage all sorts of health issues poor circulation, loss of muscle and strength, weakening of the heart and just overall poor health. Other factors that contribute to a rapid decline in the health of truckers are sleep deprevation, not eating right(and when they do eat, they eat the worst foods that are available,i e;fried foods loaded with saturated fats, sodium and processed sugars and preservatives or starve their bodys by only eating once a day which is REALLY BAD), add to that alot of drivers smoke cigarettes every waking hour throw in hefty dose of stress be it job related, traffic related or personal issues and you've got a walking heart attack looking for a place to happen. Diabetes, high blood pressure, congestive heart failure,all serious diseases which the otr trucking lifestyle contributes too. I did'nt even mention the issue of poor hygeine(keeping your bodies clean showering at least once a day), and emotional health and you began to see why so many truckers are always seem upset or angry about things that they have no control over, which also contribute to stress and poor health.

    The upside is that you don't have to fall into this catogory, there are things that you can do on a daily basis to reverse this vicious cycle. Exercise and eating a good clean diet can insure that you will avoid most of these pitfalls that eventually catch up with most otr truckdrivers. This is without a doubt the best and the fastest way to immediatly improve your health. Is it going to be easy? I doubt it. But it will boost your self-esteem, make your body stronger and your mind sharper and your energy levels will drasticly increase. I'm not telling you something that I think or heard, I'm telling you something that I do on a daily basis and what it's done for me and countless others.

    I'm not going to go into detail here about what I do and how I do it, but if you will go to the thread in this drivers health corner entitled :Diet and exercise for the otr trucker, you will find many suggestions and alot of helpful advice about exercise, diet and nutrition as well as questions and answers about health concerns that face truckers on a daily basis. Good luck and I hope this helps you.
     
  8. Cybergal

    Cybergal Road Train Member

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    Cymerax

    Here are some good back exercises too that will help with circulation, stretching the muscles.


    Pelvic Tilt Lie flat on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Slowly tighten your stomach and buttocks as you press your lower back onto the floor. Hold 10 seconds then release. Repeat 5 times.


    Hamstring Stretch Lie on your back with one leg straight In front of you and the other bent so that your thigh is resting on your chest. Hold onto the ankle of your bent leg and dowry try to straighten your leg. (Be sure to keep your lower back on me floor as you straighten your leg.) Hold for 10 seconds. Relax. Repeat 5 times. Then, switch sides and do the same sequence with your other leg.


    Leg Lift Lie on floor with one leg straight in front of you and the other bent with your foot flat on the floor. Keeping lower back on the floor, slowly raise your straightened leg as far as you can. Hold for 10 seconds. Then, slowly lower your leg to me floor. Repeat 5 times. Relax. Switch leg positions and repeat the same sequence with the other leg.
    back exercise
     
  9. solitary_con

    solitary_con Light Load Member

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    I was told by a chiropractor that wearing a weightlifting belt several hours a day, along with ab and lower back exercises would help remedy many lower back problems.
     
  10. MickeyFIN

    MickeyFIN Light Load Member

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    True you, but Only Lower back problems...many neglect the upper back/ribs getting stiff...and it´s there your lungs are and they feed the brains to stay alert.
    When you start to feel even remotely stiff round the shoulder and neck area start exercising and stretching.
     
  11. Cymerax

    Cymerax Bobtail Member

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    What if your're driving a company truck? Can you change out the seat (saving the original) for a Recaro as long as you're the only one driving it? I remember buying Recaro seats for my Saab back in the early 80's when I was into road rallying - very nice and a quality seat IMO.

    Yeah that's been one area I know I've got to work at - I generally work hard enough in my current job that I don't need to execise but I've got to make a change for sure. Thinking about getting some of those grass-hopper boots cuz they look like they'd be a fun way to get some jogging/aerobic work in.

    Yup I'm a firm believer in visiting my chiro-man - usually about once a month but I foresee that increasing to every two weeks when I start driving.

    Hmmm, question is can I fit one in the sleeper....(maybe my ex would qualify, lol)
    Thanks for the advice Mickey ;?D
     
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