The Relationship Between Posture and Spinal Health

You finish another long day at the office. You stand up and immediately put your hands to the lower back. You’ve just felt a sharp pain – and it is not the first time you’ve experienced it. However, most people tend to ignore the effect of poor posture on spinal health. Today, the doctors at our Camden spine center will discuss the importance of correct posture for a healthy spine.

What Exactly Is Posture?

Posture is how we carry our bodies while standing and sitting. There are two main types of postures:

  • Inactive posture – when we are sleeping and all the muscles and joints in our body are completely relaxed
  • Active posture – any type of posture we assume during the waking hours

In turn, active postures can be:

  • Static – when we are standing motionless or sitting
  • Dynamic – when we are walking, running or jumping

Although all types of postures affect spine health, the most problematic is the active static posture. It is the posture most of us assume every day when we go to work and sit down to work on a computer.

A Vicious Cycle: Poor Posture and Spinal Health Problems

You may wonder: how bad can incorrect posture be for you? First of all, it is one of the main causes of back pain. Secondly, it creates a vicious cycle for patients, who see their lives controlled and limited by this problem.

Let us examine the two issues in more detail:

poor ergonomics has a bad influence on spine health

The Negative Effects of Poor Posture on Spinal Health

An incorrect posture causes several health problems:

  • Muscle strain: an incorrect posture puts more strain on certain muscle groups and ligaments. The first symptoms of this issue are muscle tightness and a sensation of fatigue, followed by pain.
  • Uneven pressure on joints: slouching positions causes the body weight to shift. Instead of being evenly distributed on all the vertebrae of the spine, some of them will bear more weight. In time this leads to inflammation, pain and degenerative disc disease.
  • Disc compression: the discs are rubbery elements cushioning the vertebrae and absorbing shocks. Due to poor posture, these discs can get compressed and damaged, often resulting in sciatica pain.
  • Blood flow obstruction: poor posture has a negative effect on the blood flow to the spinal tissues. This reduces their ability to function and repair themselves from minor injuries. In time, this contributes to chronic back pain.

How Back Pain Contributes to Poor Posture

In turn, the constant back pain caused by poor posture will accentuate this spine problem. The doctors at our Camden spine center know how people react under the influence of constant pain:

  • Pain-avoidance postures: unconsciously, people seek a posture that reduces or stops their pain. These postures are not the correct ones – they just put less pressure on the injured muscles and vertebrae.
  • Muscle weakness: many people stop being active after they start experiencing back pain. They give up hobbies, sports and even avoid doing everyday chores that cause pain.
  • Reduced range of motions: poor posture combined with a sedentary lifestyle as a result of pain will reduce the flexibility of muscles and joints, resulting in stiffness of the spine.

Learn How to Maintain a Correct Posture at Our Camden Spine Center!

Prevention is better than treatment when it comes to spine health. At our Camden spine center, you will find both modern treatment options for back pain and helpful advice to prevent the most common spine conditions, including poor posture.

Reach out to us as soon as possible after you experience back problems and let our specialists help you get better: 864-513-8950!