March 15, 2021

Back Straighteners: Posture Importance and How Tools can Help Achieve It

Written by: Iris Tabangcora, M.D.
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What is Posture? 

Posture entails the alignment of different body parts in relation to each other at a specific time. Particularly, this involves complex interactions between bones, muscles and the connective tissues that hold them together as well as the brain, spinal cord, and the nerves. Compounding this complex relationship is the human variety in motor control, movement, and balance. 

Therefore, posture relies on the integrity of these body parts and control mechanisms. Information about the environment coming from faulty structures such as the eyes, ears, and limbs affect how the brain controls muscle tone and movement in relation to space at a particular time. Adding to this is the extent of trauma accumulated over time which strains the body’s structures and functionality. Other causes that can impair the integrity of these body parts include degenerative, trauma-related, nutritional, hereditary, and even autoimmune diseases.


Quick Table Of The Best Back Straightener From Our List

Click Here for a more detailed product description 

Why Should I Care About Bad Posture?

Bad posture and the complications it poses take over one’s functionality insidiously. One who might be experiencing little pains here and there may one day end up wheelchair- or bed-bound if the root cause is not identified and prompt intervention is not initiated early. This requires long-term care and assistance in activities of daily living, close monitoring of appropriate lab parameters and response to treatment, and serial re-adjustments of mobility aids like back straighteners. 

Therefore, it carries a severe amount of health expenses that may seriously compromise one’s financial security. This also increases the risk for neglect by family members and friends in the long run. When one is slowly losing his independence, one is more likely to develop mood disorders. 

Over time, this leads to chronic pain, cardiac and respiratory compromise, digestive issues, and functional impairments. This means more medical expenses rooting from something that is relatively preventable. Derangement in major functions like these can seriously compromise one’s health more than the bad posture itself. 

It is important to remember that bad posture can happen to a person of any age. It shouldn’t be exclusively linked with the elderly and aging. This is why it is important to instill the importance of maintaining good and proper posture in younger people and even children. 

In addition, lifestyle and occupation contribute to the rise of younger people suffering from bad posture and its consequences. For instance, students and people working in the office may find themselves sitting for long periods with backs hunched from too clerical and computer jobs. Risks like these accumulate over time and cause trauma which only shows up when it is too late, when no medical help can mend it, even just a little. 


What Can You Do?

Maintaining proper posture requires a conscious effort on top of environmental control, exercise, and medications. Tools like back straighteners can significantly help in providing environmental cues to maintain posture. Upper back straighteners, lower back straighteners, and back straightener braces are especially helpful in cases where medications can only do so little to provide relief and when doing surgery brings more harm than benefits. 

Finding the best back straightener can be tedious, but the key here is understanding one’s condition with the help of a medical professional, what needs support, and matching with a tool’s functionality that works best for one. 


Power in Posture Through Back Straighteners

There are tons of back straighteners for men and women available in the market now. Each boasts with its features that provide total comfort and functionality. However, one should ask: will this provide for my posture problem? Does this match my lifestyle and activity demands? Does this effectively suit my frame? Surely, the questions may be never-ending. The anxiety to not get it right the first purchase is palpable, especially if finances are scarce. 

Reading through back straightener reviews can be overwhelming. Reviews can be contradicting that it can easily sway one, especially those who are just starting to look for these tools. An open and objective mind should always be in display when browsing for this possible purchase. 

It is essential to take note of the areas it will support, durability, comfort, and ease of use. Otherwise, compliance will be compromised and outcomes will suffer. It will also help to seek a medical professional’s opinion of the product to gain insight on its Science. They can also provide information on how to maximize its usage. 


What To Look For When Buying Back Straighteners

There are a lot of factors that come into play when purchasing back straighteners for men and women. More than the aesthetics, it should be able to deliver its intended use effectively. Here are some factors that you might want to consider when buying back straighteners: 


Quality of Materials

Take note of the materials used in the back straightener. Is it washable? Will it not hurt the skin when applied directly? Is it breathable? Can I still use it outdoors without being too conscious that I am wearing a posture correction tool? High-quality materials equate to years of optimal use. It means being able to save in the long run! For those with sensitive skin types, this is of particular importance as it may render the purchase useless. 


Appearance 

Wearing back straighteners does not have to be plain and boring! If you’re the type who wants to dash some style and fashion into your back straightener, then do ask if other colors are available. This is particularly helpful if you’re planning to wear the back straightener on top of the outdoor clothes. On the other hand, if you want it plain and minimalist, there are tons of back straighteners made that way too. Simply put, choose the best back straightener whose appearance appeal to you most.


Comfort

For most people, this is the major deal breaker over functionality. If the back straightener isn’t comfortable to wear, then consistency of using the tool might suffer. The problems will not be addressed and money has been wasted. This is why before buying, try to read on the descriptions of the back straighteners, how it plays out on different parts of the body, its dimensions, and lastly, the reviews of other customers. 


Size 

Carefully follow the description on how to measure your size. It pays to take the current measurement with a soft tape. Don’t solely rely with the fact that back straighteners are adjustable. 


Maintenance

Take note of how the back straighteners can be washed. See if the material can sustain multiple washes. Go for the less maintenance ones. 


Five Back Straighteners We Recommend

We searched through the Internet for back straighteners which can help you achieve optimum posture control. Here are the best back straighteners for men and women: 

 

1) TLSO Thoracic Full Back Brace

This back straightener for men and women comes with a full mid-back support, particularly from spinal level T2 to S1, which is a commonly affected site for compression fractures and spinal stenosis. With the great length of coverage of its chest and back panel, spine alignment is ensured if fitted and used correctly. Other uses can be for early treatment of thoracic scoliosis, pre- and post-surgical back stabilization, and osteoporosis.

While it is true that this back straightener is more expensive than others, its features and coverage for bigger sizes can make up for it. This is an important feature because most of posture problems and chronic back pain can be linked to having more than the ideal body weight. Its largest size can fit up to waist measuring 55 inches.

Its mechanical pulley system makes it one of the best back straighteners for men and women. This makes it possible to shift the weight the lower back carries to the abdomen, relieving the back from pressure and further compression. With easy to adjust panels, one can control the extent of compression as well as its height so it can match one’s stucture perfectly. Buckles are quick-release too which makes it easy to wear and remove. Lastly, its minimalist design makes it a viable option as a back straightener for both men and women.

On the other hand, its sternal attachment or pad may cause a bit of discomfort when changing position as it can hit the chest, especially when its fitting is not adjusted correctly. The key here is to order the right size as it can fit clumsily and compromise comfort. The material used provide for a rigid support but the extra layers of mesh may cause discomfort among users, especially those located in temperate areas. This may also be bulky if worn under street clothes.

 

2) BraceAbility LSO Back Brace

This lower back straightener is best made for those suffering from lower back problems like sciatica, herniated discs, and lower spinal fusions. Non-displaced spinal fractures involving spinal level L2-L5 may be aided by this back straightener too.

 

Like the first product, it comes with a wide range of size up to waist measurement of 68 inches. The design is also plain and simple, which makes it a viable option for either gender. If you want it plain and simple, then you might consider this back straightener.

 

This lower back straightener comes with reusable gel packs for either hot or cold therapy, which helps provide comfort and reduce swelling and spasms. However, caution is needed here especially in bedridden patients and with reduced sensation to avoid burns. Do check regularly the applied site for redness and swelling which may be signs of burns. This is important as possible breaks in the skin can cause life-threatening infections of the deep tissues and fats.

 

In addition to this, it comes with anatomically aligned abdominal and spinal inserts for additional back straightening support. This makes circumferential compression and stabilization possible, shifting the weight and pressure from the lower back to the abdomen.

 

Application might be challenging if one is living alone. However, there are hand loops to assist you. Furthermore, this is more bulky than other back straighteners. However, if the relatively thick inserts can provide total comfort, then this might be a negligible issue. Materials used may also irritate skin, especially those with sensitive skin types. Caution is still advised as skin reactions are quite unpredictable and are either sudden or delayed.

 

3) Posture Corrector for Men and Women, Back Brace for Upper and Lower Back Support

Now this is one of the more casual back straightener in this list. It’s a triple-support back straightener for shoulders, upper back, and lower back. This is particularly helpful since these three body parts are usually the most affected when one is suffering from unmanaged posture problems.

It’s versatility range from being able to use it during exercise, office work, and even for vocations like hiking and yoga. Designed as a back straightener for both men and women, it relieves neck and back pain caused by poor posture. It should be considered by those who are not only suffering from posture problems but also by those who lead active outdoor lifestyle.

This back straightener is less bulky and is made from a thin material without compromising its performance. Still, caution is up especially for those with sensitive skin types. It can be worn directly under the clothes without it being too detectable, which is an issue for quite a lot of people looking for back straighteners. The largest size can fit waist measurement of up to 45 inches, which is quite limited considering the population. Straps are highly-adjustable to meet the best fit. However, for those with limited mobility, this may be quite a challenge to put on.

 

4) Bauerfeind - LordoLoc - Back Support

 

One of the best lower back straighteners in this list is this product which boasts for its medical-grade manufacturing standards as a product of Germany.

Durable velcro fastenings and hand straps allow for easy application and removal of this lower back straightener. Its back surface is lined with flexible aluminum rods which adapts to the curve of the body optimizing posture. This feature improves proprioception and in turn, better maintenance of posture. Lastly, this lower back straightener is muscle-activating and prevents shrinkage. It is definitely a good buy for people in the advanced stage of dealing with their spinal problems.

This lower back straightener is made of knit and is washable. However, for those with large abdomen, there is a possibility that material will roll especially when changing positions, compromising comfort and support.

 

5) Posture Corrector for Women and Men, Caretras Adjustable Upper Back Brace

This upper back straightener comes in an innovative cross back support design that is undetectable when worn under the clothes. This crossback support is excellent to stabilize the shoulders and upper back. However, its application may be challenging to some. The largest size can fit up to waist measurement of 43 inches, which is quite limited considering the population demographics.

The material is made of strong yet stretchable straps that can be easily adjusted to avoid pain over the underarm. Another advantage of this back straightener is that it also offers support for the lumbar muscles making it a practical purchase. Like other casual back straighteners in this list, it can also be used in daily activities such as when exercising and doing outdoor activities.

Again, the key here is to thoroughly understand one’s condition, which body parts need support, and to not compromise the quality of materials used in back straighteners. Closely work with a medical professional regarding its usage for maximized treatment outcomes.


Conclusion

 Posture problems caused by several reasons like trauma and degeneration employ a multidisciplinary approach to improve quality of life. As this likely involves long-term care and rehabilitation, it is important to identify root causes to appropriately initiate prompt intervention. This has to be taken seriously as it can lead to functional disability which can drastically reduce quality of life and sense of independence among people affected.

Approaching people with posture problems involve nutrition counseling, exercise and physical therapy, pain and anti-inflammatory medications, and even surgery. Tools like back straighteners provide environmental reinforcement for spine alignment especially for those whose cases are not amenable for surgical corrections. It has to be worn consistently for a number of hours a day, depending on the physician’s jurisdiction. This is why it is important to seek a medical professional’s opinion regarding the use of back straighteners as ineffective usage of this tool will only bring more harm than good.

If you or a loved one is in need of back straighteners, browse through the list again and make that purchase now.

References:

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780443102332500225
  2. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00586/full

Article written by Iris Tabangcora, M.D.
Iris is a Philippine-based physician currently training in Emergency Medicine. She has been writing for various health websites for the last 10 years. Also a Nursing degree holder, she has spent her energy in educating nursing students on Research and Pharmacology. Her interests lie in medical education, research, and public health.

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