link between back pain and posture

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Suffering from back or neck pain?

Could your posture be part of the problem?

We all know that we should sit and stand up straight, after all its what our Grannie's told us, and like most things Grannie said there is a great deal of truth in it. However, it can be really hard to believe that something as simple as having poor posture can give you back or neck pain.

Most people believe that their pain has a much more serious origin-this is because of the real level of pain they are experiencing. However, research shows that often the cause of low back pain is due to poor posture. In the first instance you need to have your back or neck assessed by a fully qualified Physiotherapist i.e., they should be registered with the Health Professions Council (HPC), and a member of the CSP (Chartered Society of Physiotherapy). Your physiotherapist will assess the cause, and treat the pain. Then under the guidance of your physiotherapist you can begin a maintenance programme to have the best possible chance of ensuring the pain does not return. This includes carrying on any exercises prescribed, and addressing any issues with your posture. A Great way to continue maintaining good posture and strengthen the muslces supporting your back and neck is to do Pilates.

As an extra bonus to having good posture how you stand and hold yourself can make a difference to the way you look, you will look taller if you stand and sit up straighter. Something very dear to me (at 4'11.5" I need all the help I can get!) Also it makes you appear more confident, something most of us need from time to time. Other benefits of good posture include optimising breathing as basically when you slouch you can squish your lungs, and will halp maintain mobility as you agae - including your hip and shoulder joints, and of course reducing back pain.

How to improve your posture

A quick way to check your posture is to stand with your back against a wall. Relax and feel how far the head is away from the wall. Now straighted up with 100% effort as though you were being measured for height, now your head should be touching the wall. Relax by a little over half and you ahould have it about right. There should be a small gap between the wall and your neck and lower back.

In cases of severe pain seek medical attention immediately. If pain continues for more than 3 days call your physiotherapist Gerry Scott at Response Physiotherapy Dundee.

Thanks for reading our blog. We look forward to sharing more tips on how to keep your body in tip top condition