Bras, breast health and posture.
Bras are designed to hold the breasts in place however a poorly fitted tight bra can impact on your health according to a study at the British school of Osteopathy.
A tight bra strap can affect the natural movements of breathing by reducing the mobility of the ribcage, diaphragm and muscles and joints of the thoracic spine.
Muscular tension and joint immobility in this area can create an imbalance in diaphragmatic breathing, forcing the upper ribs and accessory breathing muscles which attach to the neck to contract leading to increased neck tension.
The thoracic spine provides a nerve supply for the intestines and a reduced mobility of the thoracic spine and diaphragm may influence gut function possibly resulting in constipation and irritable bowel syndrome.
External pressure of an ill-fitting, fashion or tight elastic bra may affect circulation and compress the lymphatic vessels of the breasts, underarm and shoulders and prevent proper drainage of the breast tissue, leading to fluid accumulation in the breast and the potential for toxins to build up in the breast tissue as well as lesions or lumps on the skin.
Slouched posture like what you probably do while working on your computer or driving your car causes your chest muscles to actually stiffen, which pulls your shoulders forward into a permanent slump. If the problem is severe enough, the neurovascular bundle of nerves to the arm can become compressed and the woman may feel pins and needles. This poor posture eventually fatigues the muscles and painfully stretch the ligaments of the neck, shoulders and mid-back. Postural changes can cause are an increased kyphosis (curve in the upper back) and rounded shoulders. This posture type is known to predispose people to suffer from neck and back pain, and can even lead to shoulder problems such as impingement syndromes.
Osteopathic treatment focuses on correcting joint restriction and muscle tension and involves postural advice and exercises which can all help to reduce pain and improve posture. Along with treatment it is often worth looking at how well your bra fits. It is important to get the right size and style of bra to suit you.
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