Postural hygiene is a direct benefit to your health. By improving postural hygiene your body has the ability to function at its maximum and heal more efficiently. An additional factor related to health is immunity. Research has shown that proper posture helps increase a person’s immune system. This can help prevent sickness such as the common cold, and influenza.
Our posture is not just cosmetic. It is a common misconception that bad posture is from sitting in an incorrect position or not standing up straight. Although these can over time cause problems with the posture, postural distortions are due to the incorrect positioning of the spine from incorrect postural hygiene. In addition, posture directly relates to a person’s ability to function properly. Incorrect posture, due to misaligned vertebrae of the spine, causes functional problems in the body. Some of these problems include: decreased ranges of motion, decreased breathing capacity, decreased blood circulation, decreased energy, problems sleeping, and malfunctioning of the major organs, as well as symptoms such as muscle fatigue, pain, headaches, vertigo, and tingling in the extremities. Each deviation of the posture is an example that something structurally is not correct with the body. Although many people try to resolve these problems by sitting straighter or only with muscular exercises, these provide minimal results until the spinal stability and structure is corrected. When this happens it allows the body to return to its normal position, muscle tension relaxes, symptoms and pain decrease
WHAT CAN POSTUROLOGY HELP AGAINST?
There are two types of scoliosis. Functional Scoliosis and structural Scoliosis. Both types can be detected early on in a child’s development. Posturology helps realign the vertebra in structural scoliosis to ensure that the development returns to a normal state. In functional scoliosis chiropractic corrects the malfunction allowing the body to return to optimal position and function. In either case it is imperative to detect the scoliosis early in order to maximize the potential for a full recovery.
It is recommended that all children have annual postural analysis starting at age 6. The most common “traditional” treatment for scoliosis is a plastic and metal brace that a child wears for a minimum of one year that physically pushes the child’s body into the “correct” position. However this whole uncomfortable and embarrassing process, normally does not fully correct the problem, and could be avoided through Posturology.
HEADACHES – MIGRAINES
Although there are cases of food sensitive headaches, the most common migraines and tension headaches are caused by incorrect posture of the cervical spine. Most cases specifically postural distortions of the First Cervical Vertebra. Attached to this vertebra are Twenty One tiny muscles that also connect to the base of the skull. When this spine is misaligned it exerts tension into the skull causing headaches and migraines. It also puts stress on the spinal cord limiting the function of the nervous system.
Frequently at the end of the day someone will have a headache after sitting with forward head posture stressing these muscles and vertebra. In addition it limits the function of the nerves exiting this spinal level and puts pressure on the base of the brain stem. These combinations lead frequently to headaches. Posturology is a quick, efficient, and safe way to correct this common problem.
Neck pain is a common problem that is often caused by a malpositioning of the spine or incorrect posture. Over time this increases the tension of the muscles of the neck due the stress of holding the head in an incorrect position.
Every centimeter the head deviates anterior increases the amount of stress applied to the spinal stabilizing muscles of the neck and dorsal spine. This increased stress often leads to tension, contractions and pain of the neck. This can manifest in a common problem known as torticolis when the stress reaches a maximum point of tolerance. Posturology has been shown to greatly reduce neck pain and cervicale as well as help prevent this problem from occurring.
Back pain will occur in 80% of the population at some point in their life. This structurally based pain problem occurs over time from malpositioning of the vertebra, leading to incorrect postural changes, which increase the pressure on the spinal stabilizing muscles in the back.
Most back pain can be relieved and prevented through Posturology by removing the subluxations, allowing the body to return to the correct postural positioning, which allows the spinal stabilizing muscles to function properly with less stress.
When the spinal column is not aligned correctly it changes the function of the muscles. This changes the gait process or our ability to walk with proper function of the muscles and bones. Often what happens when we have a lumbar posture distortion, this changes the function of the pelvis leading to a dysfunction in leg length. This dysfunction manifests in one leg being slightly shorter than the other leg. During the process of walking this difference in length changes the normal function of the pelvis arriving in an increased level of stress on the lumbar spine. This stress over a period of time exerts stress and dysfunction on the vertebral discs of the spine.
This increased stress causes degeneration of the disc, which can lead to a herniated Disc. In addition, the vertebral subluxation changes the position of the vertebra that leads to an even higher level of stress on the disc, increasing the probability of a herniated disc. When a disc herniation manifests, the problem that caused this has been present for an extended period of time. This is not a process that happens quickly, but is a deteriorating disorder that happens from prolonged stress and malposition of the vertebra (unless it is a traumatic disc herniation).
It is far more beneficial to receive Posturology correction to correct this problem before it becomes present. However, Posturology can help with current disc herniation by correcting the postural distortions, allowing the vertebral position of the spine to realign. This allows for proper function of the muscles of the spine, pelvis, and correction of leg length. When these factors are restored the herniated disc can migrate back to its original position allowing for decreased symptoms and optimal function. Depending on the severity of the herniation depends on the potential to fully correct this problem. This is why it is advised to seek care as soon as possible, in contrast to waiting for the problem to arise.
This is a problem that generally has one of three causes. The first is due to a misalignment of the lumbar spine, which has been displaced and is putting pressure on the nerve that causes irritation. This irritation (in all three cases) on the sciatic nerve is felt as a sharp, sensitive, electric shooting pain that can be localized or travel all the way down to the feet. In many instances it causes numbness, tingling, and cold sensations of the legs and feet. The second cause is due to a herniated disc in the lumbar spine. As mentioned previously, the reason for this herniation is due to the misalignment of the vertebra, which then causes degeneration of the disc.
Once the disc is herniated it presses on the nerve causing the irritation. The third cause is due to a dysfunction of the piriformis muscle of the pelvis. When the spine has postural distortions or the pelvis is misaligned it changes the functions of the muscles. In this instance the piriformis muscle becomes shortened, tense and hypertonic. The sciatic nerve passes under this muscle. This dysfunction causes the piriformis muscle to press on the sciatic nerve causing the irritation. All three of these issues can be aided through Posturology.
When the lumbar spine, and pelvis are aligned properly it allows proper function of the muscles, discs, and nerves. If all of these are functioning in harmony there is no sciatic problem or symptoms.
DIZZYNESS – VERTIGO – NAUSEA
Vertigo is a serious neurological situation that can often be debilitating. It can lead to more serious injuries, and cause one to live in a state of fear or unease. This symptom should not be taken lightly, and should be addressed as soon as it manifests. Although there are several causes for vertigo one of the more common is from postural distortions. When the head is anteriorly placed as with forward head posture it causes the vertebra of the cervical spine to increase pressure on the brain stem. It also increases the tension on the sheath of the spinal cord called the dura mater. Both of these problems increase the potential for headaches, nausea, and vertigo.
Posturology helps these problems by resolving the postural imbalances of the spine through correction of the vertebral misalignment, which then removes the pressure from the brain stem and dura mater, restoring proper function to the body. This commonly resolves the symptoms of vertigo, nausea, and headaches. However, it should be noted that in some instances these are more serious neurological problems that are caused from disturbances in the brain. American Posture Institute is highly trained to assess and detect these problems, and can refer these cases to the appropriate specialist for further evaluation when necessary.
HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
High blood pressure is a common occurrence in today’s society, one that usually ends with a lifetime of medication, increasing symptoms, and serious disease. Research has shown that proper diet and exercise are as effective as taking blood pressure medication. (It should be noted that it is only effective if a proper diet and exercise are actually implemented).
When facing the choice of medication or lifestyle changes one must seriously contemplate if they would like to live the rest of their lives on these medications that have serious side effects. In addition to regular exercise and proper diet, research has shown that Posturology can help decrease blood pressure if there is a misalignment of the first cervical vertebra. Research has shown that a subluxation of the first cervical vertebra puts pressure on the body that causes an increase of blood pressure. This happens due to the fact that when the body is under stress or pain blood pressure levels increase.
By removing this irritation to the body the stress level decreases, causing a decrease in blood pressure. It must be noted, that although the research shows a significant decrease in high blood pressure can be achieved in some patients through Posturology, it is not advised to stop taking current medication with out first speaking to your Medical Doctor. In many instances the medication can affect the body in other ways; stopping medication suddenly can cause the body to respond in a negative manner. Any attempt at stopping medication should be monitored and controlled through the process of removal.
If you would like to book in for a full clinical posture screening with me (SJ) you can book here.