Source: GNN News HealthThe Importance of Posture
At the top of the spine rests a 10-pound “bowling ball,” otherwise known as the head. Proper posture helps us balance that weight without putting too much stress on the neck muscles. (If you’ve ever had a tension headache, you know what happens when those neck muscles are strained.)
Good posture and good ergonomics also help prevent wear and tear on the spine itself. It’s no different than keeping your car in balance — if the wheels are out of balance, they will wear down more quickly.
In a time when technological devices are seemingly everywhere, some of the biggest causes of bad posture, include:
Smartphones. Wear a hands-free headset when you’re making phone calls as holding the phone to one ear leads to bad posture. If you’re reading a smartphone, hold it up to eye level, so you can look straight ahead, rather than looking down.
Computers. The center of your computer screen should also be at eye level, even if you have to stack the monitor on top of books to achieve the proper height. At your desk, always try to sit up with your back straight, shoulders back and backside touching the back of your chair.
Low technology. You can even achieve better posture reading a newspaper by putting pillows under your elbows to hold it closer to eye level. Also, try to get up and move if you find yourself sitting for long periods. When your muscles tire from sitting too long, slouching and other bad postures are more likely.
I often joke that the goal of good health is to allow us to “die young as late as possible.” A healthy spine can help ensure you live a full life, and accomplish all of the great things ahead of you.
Specialized Medical Care for the Brain and Spine Health
The Neuroscience Center of Central Jersey, one of the specialized treatment centers at CentraState Medical Center in Freehold, offers neurologic diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitation for injuries or medical conditions related to the brain, spine and nervous system. Treatment services include disease and pain management, neurosurgery and advanced radiation therapy for tumors in the brain.
By Dr. Mark R. McLaughlin, a board-certified neurosurgeon on staff at CentraState Medical Center in Freehold. He maintains a private practice at Princeton Brain & Spine Care located at CentraState’s Star and Barry Tobias Ambulatory Campus. He can be reached by calling 866-CENTRA7 (866-236-8727) or visit centrastate.com/neuroscience.
To find a neurosurgeon or neurologist, check the Physician Finder database at centrastate.com/physicians.