Good posture is about more than looking good and moving gracefully. You need good posture to keep your entire body healthy and functioning with the least possible stress.
Bad posture alone can lead to chronic pain. If you have ongoing pain that’s not caused by an injury or degenerative disease, chances are poor posture contributes to the problem.
Chiropractors specialize in helping people with posture problems. Our team at iMed Regeneration Center begins by evaluating your posture. Then we create customized treatment plans to restore healthy posture and ease your pain.
Here, we explain the effects of poor posture on your body.
Good posture (called the neutral position) holds your bones in a precise alignment that balances your body and supports healthy movement. Every time you move, especially when walking or running, your bones sustain a tremendous amount of shock and stress.
Proper body alignment (good posture) distributes the pressure among multiple structures. This prevents injuries by ensuring one bone, muscle, or joint doesn’t take on more stress than it can handle.
Every time your posture leaves the neutral position (poor posture), your body compensates by placing more pressure on one structure. The imbalance that poor posture causes leads to injuries and other problems that limit your ability to stay active.
Your spine’s natural curves distribute your weight, add flexibility, and absorb shock caused by movement. If your vertebrae were stacked straight up and down, they would sustain excessive stress, making your spine vulnerable to injuries and degeneration.
Prolonged sitting, standing, bending, and slouching due to poor posture flatten your spinal curves. As a result, you’re at risk of disc damage, slipped vertebrae, pinched nerves, and other problems that cause chronic back and neck pain.
Another posture problem occurs if you spend too much time looking down to use your smartphone or other electronics. Bending your head places the equivalent of 50 pounds of stress on your neck. As a result, you end up with the pain and stiffness of a strained neck.
Your joints experience a lot of pressure as they repeat the same movement, support your weight, and transfer pressure from one bone to the next.
As poor posture puts your body out of alignment, the joints are forced to manage more stress and shock than they can handle. The extra wear-and-tear causes joint injuries and accelerates degenerative changes leading to arthritis.
Your muscles, ligaments, and tendons can’t function properly if you have bad posture. Like your bones and joints, all of these supporting soft tissues are designed to share stress, with one muscle absorbing some and passing the rest on to other tissues.
When this well-designed system is disrupted by changes in your posture, some muscles bear more stress than others, causing injuries ranging from muscle fatigue and cramps, to stress fractures and painful tears.
Poor posture causes problems beyond your musculoskeletal system. When your posture bends the spine, it also contracts your rib cage. This reduces the space around your lungs, affects your diaphragm, and makes it hard to take a deep breath.
Most people take balance for granted, but it requires extensive coordination among bones, joints, muscles, and your sensory system.
Movements like twisting, turning, bending, or a sudden response to catch a falling object rely on your body’s ability to adjust its posture to maintain balance. Chronically poor posture throws this system off, causing balance problems that make it hard to move.
The good news is that chiropractic care can retrain your body and restore optimal posture. If you have ongoing pain without an obvious cause, it may be time to schedule a posture assessment. Call our Colorado Springs, Colorado, office or book an appointment online today.