Here at our Howard County chiropractic office, we talk a lot about posture and work hard to help our patients restore a healthy posture. But why is this so important? And why do we put so much emphasis on good posture?
Because your posture actually has a lot more impact on your health than you may realize. Poor posture is the leading cause back pain and neck pain. But poor posture can do more than that. It can impact your mental well-being and lead to other potential health issues if you don’t get it treated.
Here’s what you need to know about poor posture, and the impact it may have on your health.
How Does Poor Posture Impact the Nervous System?
Before we dive into the specifics of how our Howard County chiropractic office can help with your posture, it’s important to have a better understanding of how your posture impacts your nervous system.
Chiropractors work with the spine to help relieve unnecessary pressure on the nervous system which consists of the brain, spinal cord and the nerves that go from your spinal cord throughout the body. All of these nerves are protected by your spine and therefore impact every function of your body including your organs and muscles.
When you have poor posture, it will put your spine in a stressful position and can actually change the biomechanics of your spine and therefore the way your body functions.
All of this is putting pressure on the nerves which causes pain, but also interferes with your nervous system’s ability to do its job. This is why we talk so much about posture and work with our patients to help them maintain a healthier posture for a healthier body.
What Causes Poor Posture?
There are actually a few ways you can end up with poor posture, and it’s more than just slouching when you sit.
Some psychological situations, such as poor self-esteem or depression, can actually lead to poor posture. There are also positional causes such as poor ergonomics and poor habits that can lead to issues with posture as well. We commonly see this in individuals who stand or sit for hours, especially in front of a computer. This is a common issue in individuals who are on their phone as well and struggle with what we call “tech neck.”
Poor posture can also come from structural complications, which we see a lot in our Howard County office. Scoliosis, arthritis, injuries, spinal subluxations and muscle imbalances can all lead to issues with posture.
What Health Issues Can Come From Poor Posture?
Poor posture can lead to serious issues with your nervous system, but what are some of the specific health-related side effects that can come from poor posture?
- Vertigo and Dizziness. This is caused by poor posture in the head and neck causing dysfunction in the cervical spine.
- Digestive Issues. People with rounded shoulders and poor posture in the mid back can cause pain in this area, but it can also cause digestive issues and heartburn over time.
- Poor posture with forward or anterior head positioning can put a lot of pressure on the spine and muscles and cause tension headaches. A majority of headaches actually come from neck issues. Proper head alignment should have your ears lined up with your shoulders.
- Shoulder Pain- Rounded shoulders are a tell-tale sign of poor posture. This weakens the muscles of the upper and mid back and causes internal rotation of the shoulders. This can lead to limited range of motion and shoulder pain.
- Low Back Pain and Sciatica. Poor posture from sitting at a desk all day in poor posture can lead to serious low back pain and sciatica. This pressure places stress on the low back and the hip joints and can not only lead to pain, but numbness or tingling and eventually issues with the colon, bladder or reproductive organs.
- Neck and Arm Pain. Poor standing and sitting posture can lead to misalignments in the spine, or subluxations. This can speed up degenerative processes like arthritis and places pressure on the nerves that travel down to the arms and hands. This can cause numbness, tingling and pain in the arms.
- TMJ- When you have poor posture that causes you to have a forward positioned head, it can increase pressure on the ligaments and muscles of the jaw. This cans cause temporomandibular joint (TMJ) issues. This can cause jaw pain, issues with fully opening the jaw and more. While we treat TMJ here in our office, proper posture can prevent this issue from happening in the first place.
How Can Chiropractic Care Help With Posture?
Regular chiropractic adjustments can help restore normal curvature in the spine and help you maintain that healthy, straight posture. Here in our Howard County, MD office, we always take full spine x-rays so we can monitor your progress and see how your posture is improving.
In addition to regular adjustments, there are other things you can do in order to maintain a healthy posture:
- Movement is necessary, so getting plenty of exercise during the day is essential.
- Avoiding sitting for too long. Try standing up every 30 minutes to refocus on proper posture when you sit back down.
- Get ergonomic chairs and desks for your workspace so you can keep extra pressure off the spine and help you with posture while you work.
- Talk to your doctor of chiropractor about exercises that you can do in order to work on your posture.
Here at McAuliffe Chiropractic, we know that regular chiropractic care can help treat posture issues. We have been treating patients with posture issues in the greater Howard County and PG County areas for more than 30 years. If you have questions about your posture or you are looking for quality chiropractic care in the Howard County area book an appointment online here or call us at 301-776-0755.