Posturing for Less Pain
In my 25+ years of treating patients with head-to-toe orthopedic problems, not a patient “escapes” without a throughout postural assessment followed by re-education—usually beginning on day one of treatment. This is because I have found that even with all the best treatment skills applied, a patient who maintains poor posture will not get better, and certainly will never remain better. And I strive to be in the business of ‘no repeat’ customers (for the same problem), only “satisfied customer” referrals!
Posture is so critical for physical wellness that, with risk of being somewhat redundant, I have included discussion of it in my Overcoming Back and Neck Pain, Overcoming Headaches and Migraines, Get Healthy for Heaven’s Sake, and Sleep Well Again books!
Your body can be viewed as a series of four blocks, namely the “foot block”, the “pelvis block”, the “shoulder block” and the “head block”. In standing, these blocks must be aligned for balance, each resting directly on top of the one below. If your head and shoulder blocks sit forward, relative to your pelvis and foot blocks, overtime you will break down your spine’s joints, discs, and ligaments, not to mention you will overtax the muscles in your spine.
Sitting requires centered alignment of those same top three blocks as well, though in this position, your foot block must rest firmly on the floor. A great chair feature is a seat base that’s adjustable (can be tipped forward) so that your thighs can be made to slope downward a bit. This will help your spine to maintain the same natural curves it has when standing erect.
When lying down, you need a good “supporting cast” of pillows and a sound mattress to ensure that your spine is lined up well—just as it is in standing. My favorite sleeping “accessory” (after my husband) is a body pillow. They are worth their fluff in gold! Since a picture is worth a thousand words, visit my website (Free Resources, “Sleeping Postures that Ease Discomfort”) for a clear guide to the best set ups—or pick yourself up one of my aforementioned books!