Question: I work at a desk all day and have started to feel pain in my neck, back, shoulders and arms. Can chiropractors help with sitting posture and general posture?
El Paso, TX. Chiropractor, Dr. Alexander Jimenez provides insight into proper sitting posture and general posture through chiropractic.
Have people asked you about using a posture brace to help correct their sitting habits? Chiropractic patients with moderate posture problems, meaning that they may be chronic but are not tied to any spinal column or other medical condition, may benefit from a posture back brace to improve this condition. There are a number of great ones available, and you can see more information about some of the top ones here.
A patient such as this will almost certainly enjoy the quick referral as well as the relatively fast results, and chiropractors get an easy opportunity to help people, which explains why many enter the profession in the first place.
But if the patient does have an underlying chiropractic ailment, a back brace will probably do little if any good. These issues are usually easily diagnosed using a quick examination, and afterwards, treatment is relatively straightforward as well.
All good exams begin with thorough health history, because in most cases, family history is among the most powerful indicators about current issues.
Next, observe the individual’s gait, as how someone walks shows a number of issues. For instance, those who stand or walk with their legs abnormally spread might have fallen arches. Because the bottom of the foot isn’t in appropriate contact with the floor, the whole body has been thrown off kilter, resulting in poor posture. While it isn’t really a chiropractic condition, fallen arches are, as simple as, a referral to an orthopedist.
Moreover, if the patient is experiencing pain, the location can be an indicator as to where the muscles may be weak and there is too much strain on the spine or a different region of the body. Muscle weakness is among the leading causes of poor posture. So, follow-up tests that measure muscle strength and range of movement are usually a good idea.
If the gait examination signals issues in a particular area of the body, the professional should concentrate further diagnostic efforts in that region.
Ultimately, one of the most simple and effective evaluations is just holding a yardstick or comparable object against the patient’s back, so the two of you can definitely see any abnormalities. This comprehensive approach generally describes some of the very frequent chiropractic posture issues, including:
If the neck, lower back, mid back, or any other area is weak and/or inflexible, the individual will probably not see very much posture improvement until these conditions are adjusted and the muscles have been strengthened.
Hunchback is a degenerative spine condition that’s very prevalent in women over 60. While more advanced cases may be life threatening and may require spinal fusion surgery, most men and women respond well to therapeutic adjustments and other treatments.
This condition is much like genetically-induced kyphosis, since there’s no cure but there are several therapies available. In extreme cases, surgery may be necessary.
Un-Level Pelvis/Pelvic Tilt:
A pelvic tilt, a lower sacral base, and a femur head discrepancy can indicate a lower extremity source, but not whether it is an anatomical or functional short leg. A clinical postural exam with lower extremity screening is the only way to make this determination.
Forward Head Posture:
The anterior positioning of the cervical spine. This posture is sometimes called Scholar’s Neck, Wearsie Neck, Hunch & or Reading Neck.It is a posture problem that is due to several factors including sleeping with the head raised too high, prolonged use of computers and cellphones, lack of developed back muscle strength and deficiency of nutrients like calcium. Potential negative effects include tingling and numbness in the arms, and a burning pain between the shoulder blades.
As stated previously, back braces frequently mend postural issues, like slouching. As for structural problems, like scoliosis, more aggressive treatments are needed.
Conventional treatment consists of:
- Strength exercises
- Supportive braces
There are a number of biofeedback tools that accurately evaluate patient progress.
As a chiropractor, your patients count on you to get much better. That almost always means accurately assessing the problem, which also means a quick and capable referral or an aggressive and well thought out therapy regimen.
Chiropractic Tips For Good Posture
The information herein on "Can Chiropractors Help With Posture?" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, or licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.
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Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CIFM*, IFMCP*, ATN*, CCST
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