What is the meaning of posture? Posture is basically an attitude of the body part to maintain or to move according to a particular activity.
Posture is defined as a particular position of the body while sitting, working, communicating, etc. It is the pose and a way the person holds the body upright. And its a characteristic of human body which makes a major impact on health and overall wellness.
We all know that there are so many types of muscles in the human body. These are like skeletal muscles, striated muscles, non-striated muscles, cardiac muscles, anti-gravity muscles, etc.
For maintaining a good posture all these muscles have to work together in a proper way.
In case any of these muscle groups gets into problem (due to reasons like over usage or less usage) then the body’s posture will automatically get altered.
This in turn shows its impact both physically as well as mentally like concentration, general or localized body pain, reduction in the confidence level, poor personality rank, etc.
What Are The Different Types of Posture?
No matter, whether you are standing, sitting or sleeping; good posture is essential for health of your joints and spinal muscles.
Most of the people lack maintenance of good body posture which creates bad impact on the body and muscles.
It is therefore imperative to know about the types of body posture that help you lift your own posture well and good. Let’s check them out here…
Correct posture: The American Physical Therapy Association describes good standing position as an alignment of the shoulder, knee, ear, ankle and hip.
While sitting, the head need to be erected and the back position needs to maintain the three normal spinal curves. While sleeping, the pillows and the mattress can be used to maintain spinal curves and support the head and neck. This maintains the level with the upper back.
Kyphosis: Also known as a hunchback, this is an unbalanced position which for sure can cause back pain and neck pain. The head is pushed further in front of your gravitational center and the upper back part is rounded, accentuating the thoracic curve.
It is mentioned that this position may develop due to unhealthy positions, joint and bone degeneration.
Lordosis: This is a back posture which overstates the lumbar curve into a point which is often referred as swayback. Footing with locked knees adds this posture as unhealthy which lines up the head at the back of your center of gravity. This position causes back and neck and back pain.
Scoliotic: This position is an irregular oblique curve of the spine which results in inappropriate position of the shoulders, neck and spine. Its visible symptoms are uneven height at shoulder or a non-vertical position in the neck.
Other unusual postures: Rigid and unhealthy back postures related with head injuries are extreme and need fast medical treatment. Decorticate position is a position where the arms and the hands are coiled inward and the legs are apprehended straight outward.
This position leaves the legs and arms extended and the toes keen downwards and the head pushed to the back.
Symptoms or Signs of Poor Posture
For people who are not known about the problems associated or the signs of poor posture, let us discuss some of them in short.
Knowing about these may help you in dealing with these problems in a better way. Some of the major poor posture symptoms are as follows:
- Curved Shoulders,
- Rounded shoulders,
- Abdominal encumbrance or pot belly,
- Bent legs and bent knees when walking as well as standing,
- Pain in the back most frequently in the lower back region,
- Headache and muscle fatigue which depends on the location of poor posture,
- General body pain or localized body pain depends on the type of poor posture.
- Tilting of the head either forwards or backwards, even sometimes leaning to the sideward because of improper posture (for example regular usage of mobile phones on one side, etc).
Apart from the above mentioned poor posture symptoms there are so many other clinical features and complications seen in various parts of the body because of the wrong posture alignment. Some of them are as follows:
- Spinal dysfunction,
- Joint degeneration,
- Disk degeneration,
- Weight increase in particular area,
- Metabolic derangement,
- Lethargy in all activities,
- Joint stiffness,
- Sudden spasmodic pain in the major muscles and joints of the body, etc.
The symptoms of poor posture interferes with most of the body’s normal anatomy and physiology. Some of them appear at the earliest whereas some shows its symptoms or signs gradually. Few of the physiological disturbances which happen due to poor posture are:
- Sudden fast twitch and slow twitch of the muscle fibers,
- Weakness in the muscle strength and length,
- Reduction or poor nerve conduction,
- Reduction in the free joint movements,
- Disturbances in the responses and reflexes both motor and sensory, etc.
Tips for Relieving Or Avoiding Symptoms of Poor Posture
The major ideas to avoid or for relieving the poor posture symptoms are as follows:
- Try to avoid using soft and squashy type of chairs and seats. Poorly designed or soft seat furniture like comfy sofas are often not very good for maintaining proper posture. Especially if you sit on these for continuous long hours you may suffer from symptoms such as back or neck pain.
- Try to get good quality lumbar rolls and use it to support your lower back region when you are sitting in the chairs for a long time like during traveling, computer works, car driving, etc.
- In case if your job involves sitting for long hours try to use ergonomic chairs which reduces the muscle strain on your spinal region which in turn prevent regular habit of poor posture.
- Nowadays the office chairs and even household chairs are coming with an additional head and neck rest with perfect cushion to rest the cervical curvature. If it is affordable for you then immediately purchase and try to use it instead of normal seats and chairs.
- Posture supportive braces are very helpful for people who are suffering from bad posture problems. If you are one among them who find it hard to maintain good posture while sitting or working, you can use these braces for fixing your poor posture problem.
- While lifting any heavy objects try to keep your spine erect and utilize your thigh muscles to bend below. This will reduce the heavy burden on the spinal muscles and prevents poor postures.
Overall, poor or bad posture can impact your life adversely and you should take the appropriate action as soon as possible so that you can fix poor posture symptoms which are distracting your life. Just try to follow the above tips and you will see your pain going.
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Eliana have been practicing as a professional nurse after completing M.Sc. in 2012. She seriously loves her job to look after the seniors leading a painful life. When she is not spending time with her patients, she loves writing about neck and back pain on her site MyNeckSprain.