In our last blog, we talked about the spine and the importance that proper sitting, sleeping, and exercise have on spine alignment. But spine alignment isn’t always ideal, so today we’re going to talk about changing and improving your own back and neck pain by using good posture.
There is a substantial body of evidence which shows good posture to be the go-to for increasing and maintaining spine health. In fact, it’s one of the essential things you can do to avoid, decrease, or eliminate back and neck aches.Good posture while standing and sitting can help patients avoid back and neck pain.
There are several ways to improve your posture. We touched on exercising last time.
We sit a lot. We also slouch, slump, and stoop--three abysmal posture habits. However, these are components which can be corrected.
Put your shoulders back. Allowing the shoulders to slump forward will create a sunken chest and added strain to your neck. Exercises will help strengthen your back so that keeping your shoulders back is a more natural position and isn’t tiring.
Tuck in the chin
Your head is heavy! It’s like having a bowling ball attached to your neck. If you can imagine the pulling and twisting that could occur if you were attempting to balance a bowling ball on your neck, it will give you a fair summary of what your neck and back encounter when you crane your neck forward to peer into a computer monitor, art project, or other objects of interest.
As we move to the lower back, you’ll notice there is a natural curve in your lower spine. This curve protects your back from injury. When you slouch in a chair, the curve is lost in the slouch which results in unhealthy posture.
Both feet should be flat on the floor and knees at a 45-degree angle. Why? By keeping your feet on the floor, it provides your frame with a good base of support. Also, it prevents your back from curving in an unnatural position.
When standing, the same general rules apply. Keep your shoulders back, chin tucked, and try not to shuffle your feet when you walk. Good shoes with arch support not only protect your feet, but they also preserve your back and neck alignment.
Move it, move it
As we mentioned before, frequent breaks from sitting will aid in keeping your body limber and healthy. The Mayo Clinic recommends 60-75 minutes of moderately intense exercise per day for people who find it necessary to sit all day. This need for activity also applies to artists, such as seamstresses, painters, and draftsmen.
All of this solid advice may not stand up to the rigors of your job, passions, and life in general. We know that which is why exercises, periodic massage, and adjustments may ease back and neck discomfort if it occurs, or in the event of a car accident, work injury, or other mishaps. The essential key is to pay attention to minor aches and injuries and treat them when they arise. You’ll be happier, healthier, and be able to enjoy the activities which are important to you.
When you’re injured in a car accident, there is no reason to delay treatment due to lack of insurance or while waiting for insurance approval. Here at Northeast Portland Chiropractic, we treat car accident cases with zero out-of-pocket cost to the patient. Call 503-493-9730.