Posture and everyday habits play a major role in the development of back pain. Spending the majority of the day working away in front of your computer is bound to adversely affect your spine. Although we may take breaks to exercise certain parts of our body, it is the lower back that carries the most strain.
Chronic back pain and bad posture can be fixed by following specific exercises regularly or visiting a physiotherapist in more severe cases, but what if you could do it while you were sitting at your desk?
If you think the chairs at your office or home are comfortable, then you’ll be surprised at the difference a lumbar support pillow can make.
What Are Lumbar Support Pillows?
Unlike your common cushions used on the bed, couch, or elsewhere, lumbar support pillows have stronger padding that helps support the upper, middle, and lower back. They are ergonomically designed and made of different materials to perform specific functions.
Lumbar support pillows sit flat against the back of a chair but are soft enough to support the backbone. Some lumbar support pillows are made to provide users relief from back, hip, and spinal misalignment. Regular use of a lumbar support pillow may also keep your spine strong and help prevent spinal injuries.
How Do Lumbar Support Pillows Work?
With their special padding, cover, and adjustable belts and extensions, lumbar support pillows ensure that you can comfortably sit for long periods. Let’s take a look at the different parts of a lumbar support pillow that serve specific functions.
Also known as viscoelastic, memory foam is a foam with a stronger ability to hold its shape while supporting your back. This prevents the pillow from collapsing under the weight of your back. Although the material might go soft when it gets hot, it only happens if high pressure is applied to it.
Memory foam also helps improve blood circulation in your back as it distributes equal pressure on every point on your back. This prevents any strain on any particular muscle or blood vessel.
Memory foam also prevents lumbar flattening and muscle fatigue by keeping the back in a naturally curved position. The spinal cord is flexible to a certain extent but is ideally supposed to remain in a relaxed naturally curved position. When we use sleeping pillows to support our backs, they can do more harm than good. This is because sleeping pillows are not strong enough to support a naturally curved spine. Lumbar support pillows, on the other hand, help you stay relaxed and promote a good posture with minimum effort. Decreased muscle fatigue reduces the need for slouching, thus reducing overall pain.
The shape of your back is as unique as your fingerprint, so how does a cushion adjust to every back? Memory foam is able to mold to your unique shape, helping the cushion keep its shape while adjusting to the body of the person using it. The cushion comes in a curved shape but also bends and customizes its structure when your back pushes against it. It can also go back to its original shape immediately once the pressure is removed.
It can be difficult to stay focused on your work when your chair keeps getting hot. Sitting at your desk for long hours results in a lot of body heat getting trapped into the chair cushion. This is one reason lumbar support pillows come with a breathable cover.
They keep your back cool throughout the day, unlike head cushions that tend to trap heat. A durable mesh cover is typically used as it allows for more airflow. Another material used commonly is cooling gel to keep the surface comfortably cool.
Adjustable Straps and Extensions
Lumbar support pillows come with adjustable straps and extensions to allow the user to secure the pillow to the surface. You can easily set it up and remove it equally quickly. Lumbar support pillows are also travel-friendly and you can take them on a flight, to your office, or use them along with your car seat as well.
Anyone Can Use It
Regardless of your age and work, if you find yourself sitting on a chair for long periods, investing in a lumbar support pillow is a good idea.
A lumbar support pillow can also be used for the duration of recovery or even permanently as most come with a lifetime warranty. You can even use a lumbar support pillow while sleeping. Try to place it under your lower back or under your knees (when you’re lying on your back). One of those positions could help align your back to maintain the curve of your spine as you sleep.