Struggling with Scoliosis?
Scoliosis typically begins as a minor bend in the spine that gradually becomes more and more curved. To make a diagnosis of scoliosis there must be a minimum 60 degree sideways curve of the spine. Unfortunately, once the spine has advanced to this stage, there are often severe health consequences to deal with. The good news is that if the bending of the spine is discovered before advancing to that point, and cared for properly during its early stages using care, it can be prevented from worsening over time.
Many ideas regarding the cause of scoliosis have been researched and there has been little consensus regarding its origin. However, the studies have shown that scoliosis is more likely to occur in young adolescent females than males of any age.
Starting Off Small
Many times a small bend in the spine begins with the simple misalignment of a single vertebra. Over time, the body is forced to compensate for this abnormality and the spine develops “S” and “C” shaped curves. Often parents and children first notice the presence of scoliosis due to an obvious deformity of the shoulders and pelvis. Unlike most other spinal conditions, scoliosis cannot be reversed by improving posture.
While the majority of scoliosis cases affect the younger population, it's important for you to realize that the condition can also develop in older adults. As people age, degenerative disorders such as osteoporosis can cause the bones in the spine to lose their normal shape. As a result, the body must compensate by producing lateral curves in the spine to ensure that the head remains level. In such cases, if the cause of the bending is not addressed there may be severe consequences, such as heart and lung problems.
An x-ray examination performed by your doctor is the most effective means of detecting curvature of the spine. However, various orthopedic examinations such as Adams Position Test can assist in the diagnosis. Doctors will also examine the hips and shoulders, and check the legs for variation in length which can be a clue to the development of scoliosis.
Care for Scoliosis
Care has been demonstrated in numerous research studies to slow or stop the progression of scoliosis. Most doctors will have the resources and experience to provide you the most appropriate care, which may keep you from looking into more invasive or even surgical treatments.
The doctor will request your full health history to identify any factors that could be contributing to the presence of scoliosis, such as occupational factors, lifestyle habits, previous traumas, and recreational activities. After these factors have been considered, they will likely perform specific spinal adjustments to reverse the body’s compensations and assist in the restoration process.