There are differing factors that could lead to the development of unhealthy posture. More often than not, these factors have been present for longer than any of us would like to admit. It is crucial to identify them because the effectiveness of a posture brace also depends on the reason you need it in the first place. Some cases may be more severe than others, and still some may need more than the handy tool to get back in shape.
What different factors cause unhealthy posture?
First, determine what factors could have resulted in your poor posture and assess how much needs to be reversed - this is best done by your physician. To give you a head start, here are the most common reasons our spine curves unnaturally:
Poor sitting habits. This one takes the cake because a lot of people suffering from posture-related pain usually have an unhealthy sitting routine. Especially for those who work desk jobs, it is easy to be oblivious of the fact that we start to slouch while typing on our laptops or while resting on our seat.
The best way to counter this is by taking regular breaks. Every 30 minutes, stand, stretch, and walk around. This helps takes pressure off your backbone and release tension you may have been building up while seated. This also keeps you aware of how you carry yourself once you return to your table.
Tech neck. In today’s digital age, everyone is going mobile. We use it to communicate, to work, for leisure, and even for necessary tools such as flashlight, calculator, and camera. Because of our dependency on mobile phones, we tend to bend or tilt our heads down more often. This puts a great deal of stress on our necks and spine.
The best way to counter this is by lifting your phone higher when using it and also limiting your daily screen time.
Improper sleeping position. The average adult sleeps between 6 to 8 hours every night. By spending this amount of time in the wrong position, you can add pressure to your joints, muscles, and nerves that end in pain or discomfort once you wake up, making it harder to stand upright.
The best way to counter this is by sleeping on your side with a pillow between your legs, or on your back. We highly discourage you to sleep on your stomach as this leads to neck and back pain.
Improper handling of heavy objects. Many people throw their back out while carrying heavy objects or lifting them incorrectly. Straining your back muscles also affect your neck and shoulders, and make it difficult to stay upright. Your body ends up compensating by developing poor posture, which unfortunately only adds to the pain.
The best way to counter this is either asking for someone’s help or using a tool when lifting heavy objects. Also remember to lift with your knees, not with your back.
Car accident or sports injury. As mentioned, injuries lead to strain, which causes bad posture. In the case of vehicle or sports related accidents, many often experience a sudden back and forth pull to their neck and head known as whiplash. Pain may take a few days to surface but should be treated soon as it is felt.
Natural aging. As we age, our bones naturally start to decline. Unless we lead a very active lifestyle, it is normal to slowly hunch over and have difficulty keeping our spine upright. Because of this, many elderly people suffer from poor balance, falling over, and respiratory issues.
Excessive weight gain. Packing on more pounds than our build can comfortably carry adds pressure to your backbone. To compensate, our body tries to balance the weight by keeping our pelvis forward and straining our lower back.
Stress and anxiety. Did you know that your emotional health could greatly affect your physical health as well? When we feel stressed out or anxious, our muscles naturally tense up. Because of how contracted they are, they become less flexible and end up not supporting the spine as efficiently.
How long does it take for a posture corrector to fix it?
Now that you may have narrowed down the possible cause, you can assess how long it may take a posture corrector to work. Some things to consider would be:
Awareness. One of the posture corrector’s main uses is to keep you self-aware and mentally present while wearing it. Think of it as your body practicing what stance to hold so it will be ready once the brace is off. By being more mindful of how upright your back is with it on, you can better copy that throughout the day and speed up the results.
Frequency. We highly recommend wearing it everyday, but make sure not to use it all day everyday. Between 30 minutes to 3 hours is enough to train your back daily, anything more than that may lead to muscle atrophy.
Exercise. In order for your muscles to support your back, they need to be strong and flexible. Exercises that improve your strength, flexibility, and endurance can keep your back in tiptop shape and make your brace work faster for you.
Habits. In relation to being aware of your stance, you need to be aware of how you sit, sleep, and lift things as well. Be sure you are not doing anything that can counter the progress you have made. By doing these properly on a daily basis, you have a better chance at letting your brace work faster for you.
Basically, how long a back brace can take effect depends on your personal situation and what you do to help speed things along. You should not rely solely on the device, but instead use it as a guide to keep you upright, especially when you are still starting recovery.
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