Corsets — garments worn under the clothes to mold the figure — have been used by women for centuries to enhance their shape. Tightly lacing a corset or wearing one for long periods without rest may pose serious health risks. Compressing the body with a corset can lead to pain in the back or ribs and even aggravate blood pressure problems, according to ABC News. Wearing a corset may also cause difficulty breathing and lead to headaches and dizziness.
Other Health Problems Caused by Corsets
Wearing a corset, or even non-lacing styles of shaping garments, may pinch nerves, resulting in pain, numbness and tingling. Other organs like the bladder and colon may suffer under the pressure of corsets, leading to infections and constipation. Stay healthy by limiting the time you spend in corsets, as using them occasionally for brief periods is unlikely to cause harm.
References and ResourcesABC News: My Life in a Corset: Squeezing Into a New Dieting Strategy
Boston.com: Rise in Health Problems from Spanx, Corsets, and Shapewear
Ebony: Getting Waisted: The Dangers of Corset Training
ResourcesUniversity of Virginia: Too Close for Comfort
Slate: Well Rounded -- A History of Corsetry, from Whalebone to Lycra.