Scoliosis treatment

Good posture is a requirement of mothers everywhere. As a child, you probably heard, “Sit up straight” coming from your mother’s general direction more times than you care to count. But what your mother may have neglected to tell you is that it is actually impossible to sit up perfectly straight because our spines are not straight. They have some natural curves in them that allow our bodies to move properly. The spine is actually a set of interlocking bones with gel like pads in between them. It can curve and bend to accommodate all your needs for movement. But if you have scoliosis, your back might be permanently bent in an inconvenient, uncomfortable and unflattering way and you may need some scoliosis treatment.

Definition, Symptoms and Causes of Scoliosis
When you have scoliosis, it means that your spine is curved to one side (toward one of your shoulder blades). This can cause your shoulders to look uneven from the front or back and, in extreme cases, can cause a hump to appear on your back. In this situation, your vertebrae are twisted and you have limited mobility in your back.

The cause of scoliosis is generally unknown. It could be the result of a birth defect or muscular dystrophy or it could be a result of impaired body movement from one leg being shorter than the other. It can also be from a tissue or other disease. Scoliosis can cause your gait to be impaired, it may make it look like your body is uneven, and you may have a lot of back pain or reduced tolerance for activities that involve the stomach and back.

Scoliosis Treatment Options

Some children have such a mild case of scoliosis that their parents may not notice it or may not seek medical treatment. Since your curvature has to exceed 25 degrees, then this is probably a good course of action. For those children with curvatures of more than 25 degrees and less than 30 degrees, a back brace is usually the preferred method of treatment. Braces must be worn for 16-23 hours a day for several years—generally until the child has stopped growing. Although it is considered a scoliosis treatment, braces do not actually do anything to cure the scoliosis curve. They keep the spine in place to help prevent the curve from worsening. So even after wearing a brace, your child may still want some sort of corrective surgery if they feel their scoliosis curve is too pronounced.

More serious curvatures, 31 degrees or higher, may need surgery to correct. When surgery is done as a scoliosis treatment, the surgeon will fuse some of the vertebrates together to create a straight back. This is fused with bone pieces from other parts of the body and generally requires that some rods be inserted along the side of the spine to help ensure the spine stays straight. After fusing the spine, some patients permanently lose a small amount of mobility in their back. This does not generally prevent them from taking part in everyday activities but can limit their movement somewhat.

Another consideration in scoliosis treatment is whether or not the child who has scoliosis is growing or not. When children are still growing and show a curvature of 20 degrees or more it indicates the need for more aggressive scoliosis treatment options. When children have stopped growing, doctors know what their curvature is and, since it will not change or worsen, they can treat it appropriately.

It is important to remember that there are no home treatments that have been proven effective in fighting or treating scoliosis. When your child needs scoliosis treatment, your best bet is to visit your doctor and find out how bad the curvature is and what the appropriate professional treatment might be.

Last updated on Jul 13th, 2010 and filed under Musculoskeletal Disorders. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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