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Kids, Parents and Posture

          Standing up straight is important for everyone, but at no time is it more crucial to develop the habits of good posture than in childhood. Many adults with chronic back pain can trace the problem to years of bad posture habits or injuries in childhood.

            Because they are growing and more active, children may be at even more risk for injury to the back and spine.  Participation in organized sports such as football, soccer and gymnastics significantly increases the risk of sustaining some type of injury.  As a parent, seek professional help for children in the event of even a minor sports injury.  Parents should also be aware that babies who are not strapped into a car seat run the risk of injury and even death in the event of a quick stop or an accident.

Backpacks and Posture – something as common as a backpack can be harmful to a child’s posture.  The weight and uneven distribution of books can have long term implications if left uncorrected.  Carrying the backpack by slinging it over one shoulder may provoke serious postural misalignments.  Some back habits may be predisposing your child to ailments such as headaches and back pain.

Posture and Aging

Poor posture extracts a high price as you age because it can:

  • Limit your range of motion – muscles can be permanently shortened or stretched when a slumped over position becomes your normal position.  Muscles and ligaments that have been shortened or stretched no longer function as they should.
  • Increase discomfort or pain – it can often cause headaches and pain in the shoulders, arms, hands and around the eyes resulting from a forward-head position. Rounded shoulders can trigger the headaches at the base of your skill where the shoulder muscles attach.
  • Create pain in the jaw – a forward-head position can lead to jaw pain. This kind of pain (known as TMJ, temporo-mandibular joint disfunction) was once considered only a dental problem. Today we know that TMJ pain also may be caused or aggravated by faulty posture.
  • Decrease heart and lung capacity – decreases the space in your chest cavity restricting efficient functioning of your heart and lungs.
  • Cause Sleeping difficulties – snoring, sleep apnea, fatigue, irritability and memory loss.
  • Cause low back pain – one of the most common consequences of bad posture. For people over 35, low back pain is often interpreted as a sure sign of age, although it may have been developing since childhood.
  • Cause nerve interference – your spine is the basis of posture. If your posture is bad, your spine can be misaligned.  Spinal alignments may cause interference in nerve function.
  • Cause digestive difficulties – Gastro-Esophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), heartburn and acid reflux.
  • Affect Proper bowel function – event this important bodily task may be affected by faulty posture. If you have a rounded shoulder, head-forward posture, it may affect your bowels. If your spine arches and sways forward, your intestines may sag and cause constipation.

Make you look older – when you are slumped over, or hunched over, not standing straight, you can add years to your appearance. For women, the more rounded the shoulders, the more breasts may sag. Any woman, no matter what her age, can help reduce the sag in her breasts by nearly 50% by simply standing tall.