Does Poor Posture Really Cause Back Pain? Preston Chiropractor Louis Westerbeek explains

For many people it is a sad fact that poor posture will lead to back problems and, as chiropractors in Preston, we often have patients presenting themselves because of this.

Poor posture itself can have many different causes.

One of the big problems for people in the modern world is that many people spend a lot of their time sitting throughout school and then into work at a desk or driving and evenings spent watching TV or on the computer.

It is particularly a problem for those people who work at desks all day long. Instead of taking regular breaks to stretch their back muscles and indeed exercise them, they sit in the same position for hour after hour.

Unfortunately your postural habits begin early in life and you carry them through to adulthood which means the biggest problem facing most sufferers is having to ‘unlearn’ their bad habits so it no longer brings pain.

Slouching obviously increases bad posture, which can strain the muscles of the back and increase pressure on the discs in the spine, causing both upper and lower back pain, and contributing to headaches and shoulder pain.

To help prevent back pain caused by poor posture: you’ve probably been told, “Sit up straight!” While your grandmother and teachers were partly correct when they repeatedly told you this, you know it doesn’t work so well. You can temporarily improve your posture consciously but as soon as the mind wanders onto something else, the chances are, you are slumping again.

It helps to teach your children good and effective postural habits from an early age.

So what works? The first thing is to get your environment set up right to help you and the commonest thing that is missed is getting your chair angled correctly. The fact is, it is natural for your body to slump when you’re sat on a flat surface.

As previously mentioned it’s also important to get as much movement as possible into your day. Whenever you sit, certain groups of muscles naturally tighten and other groups of muscles weaken. Your healthiest ancestors would have spent a lot of time being active, so it helps if you can take regular breaks from sitting, get up and move, and stretch and tighten the right muscles regularly.

And if you spend long hours standing you need to vary your position by doing some walking, or sitting whenever possible.

When you do suffer back pain then chiropractic care can help you with some practical help and advice. We might find your posture is the underlying issue or that there’s another problem affecting both your posture and causing your pain. Once we help the underlying cause and your posture begins to improve, you will find future episodes of back pain will become infrequent.

Coupled with the chiropractic treatment and the self-help recommendations and exercises you will be taught, you shouldn’t really need to suffer back pain from poor posture again, but none of us are perfect all the time, so a top up chiropractic treatment and reminder about how to help yourself sitting, from time to time can be invaluable.

It’s important to tackle this issue and stay on top of it because back pain is the second most common cause of people going on long term sick leave after stress.

One last piece of advice: if you are suffering back pain, really try and avoid going to bed because this may make the problem worse. You should undertake some exercise and keep active to help the muscles relax and strengthen.

The best ways to deal with pain and help your back to recover are to maintain your mobility, based on your usual activities, and return to work as soon as possible.

Sitting badly in front of a computer for hours on end is storing up trouble. The body can tolerate being in one position for only a short period of time before you feel the need to adjust things like your seating posture,  computer screen position or chair height.

If you would like to know more about how our team of chiropractors in Preston can do by delivering a natural approach to your healthcare and help prevent back pain then please contact us for more information.

From the Preston Chiropractor Team
Getting You Back in Action & Enjoying Your Life Again
Serving the people of Preston and surrounding areas including Southport and Lytham St Annes

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