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Posture Prescription: Pathway to Optimal Health and Wellness

by | Jan 5, 2024 | Axiom Medical, Employee Health Management, Population Health Management, Remote/Hybrid Working, Workplace Mental Health

Have you ever considered how your posture could be the secret key to bettering your physical health, emotional stability, and mood?

Posture is often overlooked as a health concern. We tend to associate physical fitness and wellness with exercise, lifestyle habits, and diet.

Poor posture can foster many problems that compromise overall health and well-being. Discomfort, pain, and stiffness are the most common symptoms.

However, many other negative consequences may arise, many of which are less well-known.

The connection between posture and physical health is commonly acknowledged, but studies have also shown a lesser-known connection between posture, emotional well-being, and mood.

Poor Posture Impacts Physical Health

Poor posture often results in physical strain and discomfort that can compromise musculoskeletal health, particularly the spine.

It can also be the underlying cause of conditions such as tension headaches, migraines, and sciatica.

The connection between posture and musculoskeletal issues is well-established and documented in scientific studies.

One study published by the National Institutes of Health found that individuals suffering from chronic lower back pain were likelier to have a forward head posture.

Forward head posture, curvature of the spine, or the term “hunchback” are associated with a condition called kyphosis. Not only does kyphosis cause pain, but it can also lead to breathing and digestive issues.

A more severe form of kyphosis, hyperkyphosis, is common after the age of 40 and affects 20-40% of adults over the age of 60.

These findings are merely glimpses of how posture affects physical health, but they demonstrate how damaging it can be to your well-being.

Posture and Its Influence on Emotional Health

While the connection between posture and physical health is reasonably apparent, the link between posture and mental state isn’t as well recognized.

There is, however, growing evidence linking posture to emotional well-being, particularly through the concept of embodied cognition.

Embodied cognition suggests that how we use our bodies influences our emotional experience and psychological state. This implies that happiness is not just a state of mind but of body.

One study found that a slouched posture can lead to feelings of depression, decreased energy, and increased stress levels.

Connection Between Mood and Posture

Research has also shown that posture affects mood. Postures upright and confident, with shoulders back, have been associated with better mood, increased self-esteem, more alertness, and better resilience to stress.

A Health Psychology study noted that participants with a slouched posture reported increased fear, hostility, anxiety, quietness, and stillness. They also indicated passivity, dullness, sleepiness, and sluggishness.

Slouching at your desk and in your everyday life will not only impact your emotional and physical well-being but may affect your confidence and mood.

Tips to Improve Your Posture

The good news is that you can positively impact your posture. Here are some helpful tips to improve your posture:

  1. Mindful Awareness: Pay attention to your posture throughout the day, becoming conscious of how you’re sitting, standing, or moving.
  2. Ergonomic Environment: Ensure your workspace is set up to promote good posture. The screen should be at eye level, your chair supporting your lower back, and your feet flat on the floor.
  3. Frequent Movement: Avoid sitting or standing for long periods. Take regular breaks to move around and stretch.
  4. Exercise Regularly: Incorporate exercises that focus on your core, as these muscles play a crucial role in maintaining good posture.
  5. Stay Hydrated: Hydration is essential for maintaining the health of your spinal discs.
  6. Use Support Tools: Consider tools like posture correctors, standing desks, or ergonomic chairs to assist in maintaining good posture.
  7. Maintain a Healthy Weight: Excess weight, especially around the midsection, can pull your body forward, causing poor posture.
  8. Sleep Right: Use the right pillow and mattress that support the natural curvature of your spine. Sleeping on your back or side usually supports your back more than sleeping on your stomach.

Posture is more than just a physical concern; it affects mental health and emotions too.

Deteriorating posture can result from poor lifestyle habits, but it can also be influenced by medical conditions, injuries, and genetic factors.

Fortunately, by making small but essential modifications to your lifestyle, you can improve your posture and overall well-being.

Axiom Medical takes center stage in nurturing enhanced health and wellness awareness. We believe education is a powerful tool to boost overall well-being, and our team is committed to providing insightful guidance.

At Axiom Medical, we focus on cultivating a lifestyle promoting peak health and wellness. Click to delve deeper into our extensive educational resources.

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