Medical posture bras and other interventions

Sometimes, lifestyle changes are not sufficient to treat your bad posture. This is why you physiotherapist or your physician might recommend that you try a medical posture bra. Medical posture bras are specialized bras designed to keep your posture healthy.

In other words, medical posture bras help you keep your spine in a neutral position, which is the goal to overcome bad posture and its consequences. Some bras are specialized for bad posture affecting the back while others might support the shoulders, back of the neck or lower back.

Medical posture bras are ideal for those suffering from lordosis or scoliosis, conditions of the spine that are quite prevalent to those with chronic bad posture. 

These conditions not only affect the position of the spine, but may also affect an individual’s respiratory capacity by suppressing the lungs.

According to the muscle groups and body part affected by your bad posture, your doctor will recommend the correct medical posture bra for you. The result will be relieving and therapeutical and might compensate the necessity for pain medication. 

Poor posture and how to manage it

Poor posture is a form of bad fitness that can progressively lead to pain and discomfort. Most people with poor posture suffer from neck and back pain. Those with back pain, most commonly experience lower back pain, but upper and middle back pain are also prevalent.

Bad posture is attributed mainly to desk jobs, but due to the advanced technology of today, recreational use of smartphones, computers and video games also take the blame. In this fashion, our very own daily habits might be influencing our health without us noticing.

The science dealing with good and bad posture is called Ergonomics. In other words, Ergonomics is the process of designing an object which would optimally fit a human’s needs. Regarding a desk job for example, the chair on which the individual is spending most of the day’s hours is of major importance.

However, even if we are talking about the perfect ergonomic chair, bad posture can ruin everything and make the chair seem useless. 

So, what is good posture? 

When we are talking about posture, we are referring to the position of the spine. In other words, good posture is synonym to “neutral spine”. Neutral spine is the spine that consists of the three natural curves.

These curves cannot be established when transparently looking at the front of the human body, but only when looking sideways. and by means of radiology. A more practical guide to exclude bad posture is to find out whether you’re respecting the characteristics of a good posture.

Having your chin parallel to the floor and your shoulders and hips even is a sign of good posture. Your knees must be even as well, and pointing forwards. Finally, you should evenly attribute your weight to both legs and not leaning on one frequently, keeping your abdominal muscles braced. 

Most people never realize their bad posture until it starts bothering them. When some minimal pain or discomfort appears, they rush to physiotherapists and physicians claiming that they recently feel exhausted.

Others try exercise, yoga or massage techniques. When the diagnosis is finally established as bad posture, it still seems unbelievable how bad posture can make you sick.

And ts seems logical to wonder how sitting on a chair in a particular way can cause you chronic muscle pain. In other words, most people do not really realize what poor posture actually is and how it is acquired.

But most importantly, they don’t know how to get rid of it. 

Causes of poor posture

Quite many factors are implicated in the pathogenicity of bad posture. Although lifestyle is the most important factor among healthy people, injury, genetics or disease can also get in the way of good posture.

When the three latter are combined, the risk for acquiring poor posture rises dramatically. However, injury, diseases and genetics are all things you cannot control but can only improve.

What you can definitely control is your lifestyle, meaning from how you sit to how you’re using your phone. 

A very common condition that may result from or lead to bad posture is muscle pulling. A pulled muscle is a strained muscle that may be located anywhere in the body.

Muscle strains happen most commonly in the back and leg muscles and athletes are the ones to acquire them most. Some causes of a strained muscle  include muscle overuse, poor warm up and bad posture. What is for sure is that a pulled muscle can mathematically lead to bad posture.

A strained muscle is an injured muscle that has temporarily lost its full functionality and strength. Losing a muscle’s functionality makes you overuse another muscle to compensate, forcing you to acquire a poor posture while walking, sitting and sometimes even breathing. 

Diseases including muscle weakness are mostly of neurological nature. These diseases can be due to primary muscle atrophy or secondary muscle atrophy, the latter being the result of nerve injury or paresis.

When muscle paresis occurs unilaterally, bad posture is almost inevitable. In such cases, intensive physiotherapy might resuscitate the muscle and prevent long-term poor posture.

When muscle injury is irreversible, bad posture can be chronic and deliberating leading to unbearable pain. 

Your daily habits are sometimes the leading cause of your bad posture. Humans tend to adjust themselves in comfortable positions regardless of how correct these positions are.

Therefore, bad postures may be acquired while doing sports at the gym, doing housework or even sleeping.

The use of technology is also incriminated in bad posture, whether using a computer or texting on your smartphone.

Using a smartphone or tablet in the wrong way, usually damages the muscles in your neck and shoulders. You might have already noticed that leaning on your screen while texting for a long time leaves you with sore neck muscles.

Sitting in front of your computer, might affect the muscles of your neck, shoulders and back, regardless of how ergonomic your chair is. 

Another condition that may affect your posture is stress. Generalized anxiety disorder is a condition characterized by intense and unjustified fear. Common signs of anxiety is anticipation, rubbing of the hands, and muscle tension that can even lead to headache.

Muscle tension, which is characteristic for generalized anxiety disorder, causes the muscles to contract, modifying the general body posture. If you feel like recognizing any of these symptoms, you should probably consult your doctor. 

Finally, shoes can affect posture too. Heels tend to shorten the muscles of the calf and make you throw your body weight forwards. Throwing your body weight forwards might affect your knees or lower waist by transferring the kinetic forces in these joints.

The result is joint or muscle pain. Therefore, choosing your footwear correctly is of major importance for maintaining a good posture and consequently a good lifestyle.  

Medical risks of poor posture

Poor posture is not just muscle pain. There are medical risks associated with bad posture that can be quite severe if left untreated. Stress incontinence can strongly be associated with poor posture due to abdominal pressure and consecutively bladder pressure.

Urine leak, especially in the young population and when other conditions have been excluded, can be due to poor posture which directly increases abdominal pressure. Bad posture can also lead to constipation.

Sitting on the toilet in the wrong way can somehow contract the muscles of the anus leading to constipation and improper defecation.

What is actually narrowing the anal orifice is the bad posture, regardless of the individual’s diet. Finally, poor posture can lead to pyrosis or heartburn.

When sitting improperly after eating, digestive content can move upwards from the stomach to the esophagus and produces a burning sensation.

This phenomenon can alter the esophageal tissue on the long-term and even lead to pre- malignant conditions.

The digestion process finally get slower and the individual’s metabolism slows down too.

The objective to avoid all these conditions is to maintain a neutral spine position. To achieve that and get over problems associated to your bad posture, it is recommended to consult your physiotherapist or your physician to create an individualized exercise program for you, including stretching and strengthening exercises.

These exercises will focus on strengthening your pelvic floor muscles and learning how to practice a squatting position while in the toilet. 

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