Bad posture is one of the primary causes of body ache, severe pain, and bodily dysfunction. Essentially, posture is how the body is positioned in space, and therefore the relationship of all the body parts to each other. Your posture also reflects your mental attitude and self-esteem.
The ideal, or optimum, posture is striking a balance between your skeleton and muscles, protecting the body’s supporting structures from injury and minimizing the stress on the body, whether in action or at rest. If you suffer from bad posture, your health could be affected. Here’s how chiropractic care can help restore your proper body balance, and improve your posture permanently.
Poor body posture is divided into two categories: positional or structural. In determining the best course of action, the chiropractor first analyzes several characteristics. These include:
*Measuring the deviation from the ideal posture using inclinometers, posture guides, and plumb lines
*Limb girth and length measurements
*Joint mobility and flexibility
*Postural differences when sitting and moving
One cannot overemphasize the importance of muscle testing to postural analysis, as much as the therapy selected will rely directly on correcting any muscle weakness or tightness identified during the examination. There are five primary treatment modalities that your chiropractor may choose from to treat you, as well as some advanced therapies for more severe cases.
Generally, the chiropractor will use a combination of chiropractic treatment such as heat, stretching, massage, strengthening exercises, and supportive measures (when bones, ligaments, and nerves require treatment). Weakened or shortened muscles are first stretched to enable them to perform exercises designed to correct the problem for the best results.
Depending upon the condition that is being treated, a chiropractic adjustment, or manipulation, may be required to release a joint fixation that is contributing to the problem. Then any of the other modalities that the chiropractor has chosen to use will be deployed.
In more severe cases, the chiropractors may choose to use biofeedback, custom foot orthotics, and other orthotic devices. The orthotic devices, including custom foot orthotics, are used to correct structural faults that are the cause of lower back problems, such as over supination and overpronation.
Their purpose is to correct leg length inequality. In some cases, particularly following trauma, devices such as the Milwaukee brace, are used to stabilize and correct posture. This is often the case with scoliosis patients.
Biofeedback is not just one therapeutic procedure; it’s a group of them, all using electromechanical instruments to provide accurate measurements and feedback to the patients. It helps patients develop greater voluntary control over their physiology, which would normally be outside of their awareness. Some examples where this therapy is warranted is with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis and slouching of the back due to poor posture.
Bad posture and bad habits usually go hand-in-hand. The best way to improve your posture is to see a chiropractor, who will identify the problems causing your poor posture, and identify the best steps to take to correct it. Chiropractic care is about establishing and maintaining proper balance, which is impossible to achieve without good posture.