By | April 15th, 2016
Posture and Chiropractic is like bread and butter and I am constantly checking the posture of my patients on every visit. Lately, I have found we are getting worse. Here’s why….
There is a wide range of causes for neck, shoulder, low back pain, headache etc but the most prevalent one I see in practice is postural pain and injury. Causes of this are computers, sitting down a lot, not moving, phones, laptops, gadgets that are designed to save time may in fact be damaging your spine.
Here are 3 reasons why you need to stop slouching and start improving on your posture.
1. It is bad for you.
Ya don’t say?
Your spine was not designed for prolonged computer and phone time. Poor posture over time places a huge amount of pressure on the neurological and mechanical aspects of the body causing reversal of the natural curvature of your spine. When the muscles and joints are in a vulnerable state over time trying to hold you up in place, it does not take much for things to go bad.
For example, I’ve had patients who “slept wrongly” and woke up the next day with a disabling neck and shoulder pain. Postural assessment revealed weakness of most of his back muscles and excessive tightness of all of the muscles at the front of his neck and chest. This is a classic sign of poor posture and the same thing will keep happening if it is not corrected.
And no it’s not just because he “slept wrongly”, his body have just had enough.
2. For a boost of self confidence.
Picture a confident person. What does his/her posture look like?
Social psychologist Amy Cuddy demonstrates how “power posing” affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain and improving chances for success.
Can you believe the quickest way for a confident boost is lifting your chest up, tucking your neck in and pulling your shoulders back? I think that’s pretty cool.
3. To be taller
Poor posture does not just make you “seem” shorter, you would actually shrink because of that. Poor posture is one of the catalysts for osteoarthritis, degeneration of the spine.
Discs in between each vertebrae acts as a cushion for shock absorption. Narrowed discs not only causes the vertebrae to approximate, it also causes formation of bone spurs where the vertebrae attempts to fuse together as a natural defense mechanism of the body. This increases the chance for vertebrae to collapse as we age hence decreasing our height over time.
I treat chronic slouching with full spinal adjustments to allow more movement around the body. I will then activate weak muscles to get them firing again, and releasing tight muscles, commonly around the chest, front of the neck and your hip flexors.
Many people give up trying to be upright because it is tiring and uncomfortable. The trick is to allow your body to know the right posture it is supposed to be in and easing into it so it wouldn’t feel tiring to you.
ps: are you still slouching?