There's not a day that I don't review and discuss proper posture with my patients. But a lot of times they don't know the long-term effects on their health. Posture affects your heart rate and how often you breathe. Poor posture can not only cause a headache, neck pain, pain between shoulders and lower back pain and these issues are not that big of a surprise. But, I believe there's an even deeper story when it comes to posture and how it affects the body.
Recent research shows posture and how it affects your cardiovascular and pulmonary system and the evidence is becoming increasingly clear effect on your general in long-term health. Recent study from the Australian Spinal Research Foundation revealed that there is a clear link between bad posture and how it affects the brain and your nervous system. And a recent test on myself with good and bad posture, my resting heart rate increased as did my blood pressure. If this becomes a chronic biomechanical posture problem and actually settles in and affecting your body quite dramatically. Because of the technology/smart phone era we live, most of our life looking down at our phone or at our computer which causes a cervical kyphosis and/or thoracic hyper kyphosis which is a reverse curve. This impacts the way your heart and lung function creating nervous system dysfunction and stress response. Dr. Rene Caillet, Director of Physical Medicine and Rehab at USC, states that lung capacity can be reduced by as much as 30% in individuals with a thoracic kyphosis or hyper curve in the mid back region. This hyper kyphosis is also linked to forward head posture and rounded shoulders.
Poor posture is related to computer use, carrying backpacks improperly, use of smart phones, shoulder overuse and improper breathing mechanics. The impact of forward head tilt and hyper curve in your back is on the total lung capacity. The truth of the matter is that we need oxygen to stay alive, but how much oxygen we have in our blood and various tissues is based upon how our body functions properly and normally. Lower lung capacity or tidal volume as volume is a called, can play into many chronic conditions like asthma, emphysema, COPD and bronchitis among a few other things. Oxygen is life and we needed to enjoy a broad range of activities whether athletic, leisure or even academic. Who has ever tried to read something when they feel dizzy, keep yawning or fog headed due to lack of oxygen well.
As a chiropractor for over 30 years, I have found that when the head is on top of the shoulders and back, your body is in the ideal position not only to maximize oxygenation to the tissues but also to have proper nerve function and flow to the glands, organs and tissues body. If for some reason your spine is misaligned like, and injury or tress, a specific chiropractic adjustment will not only approve the alignment of your posture but also improve the function of your body. So get your spine checked, improve your posture, exercise, eat healthy and work on proper spinal mechanics so that your body stays in the ideal position to maximize oxygenation, nerve flow and of course blood flow to all the glands, organs and tissues of the body. Thanks for reading Dr. Joe