Tips for Daily Living
In your home:
- Don’t bend to pick up a child (or anyone else you may be caregiving). Sit and let the child climb onto your lap.
- Get in and out of bed carefully. To get in, first sit on the edge of your bed. Then lie on your side and gently roll over. If you sleep on your side, a pillow between your knees will help support your hips and lower back. To get out of bed, lie on your side, ease yourself to the side of the bed, then push yourself up with your arms so that you are in a sitting position at the side of the bed with both feet on the floor.
- Avoid reading in bed. To read comfortably, sit in a chair, place a firm pillow on your lap, and support your arms and book on the pillow. Keep chin tucked and neck straight. Raise your feet on a low stool, keeping knees bent.
In public places:
- Request a comfortable chair when dining out. Don’t feel you have to explain your illness, just say “I have a bad back problem.”
- Do avoid crowded public places because it is easy to get knocked off balance and fall. If using public transit, travel during off-peak hours if possible.
- Take care not to jolt your spine when climbing stairs or stepping off a curb.
- Take a pillow with you for back support in cars, offices, etc.
- When getting in and out of a car, sit down facing the door, then swing legs inwards. Reverse the procedure to get out of the car.
- If you drive a car, use rear view mirror extenders and your side mirrors to check traffic behind and beside you to avoid having to twist around. Watch out for the blind spot