June is National Scoliosis Awareness Month. Scoliosis can be caused by lifestyle and how healthy you keep your back. However, in many cases, it can simply be genetic. Scoliosis is a curvature of the spine in various directions that most commonly happens during adolescence. The curving can grow worse over time without professional intervention, leading to chronic health issues. Here’s what you need to know about scoliosis and how you can treat it so the back becomes straight once more!
Millions of people suffer from chronic back pain each year. This pain is most commonly centered in the lower back, but patients can experience upper back pain and neck pain as well. You may not even realize that your health symptoms stem from problems with your back, because they can manifest as neuropathy in your limbs, headaches and migraines from neck issues, muscle aches and more.
One cause of back pain and these types of symptoms is scoliosis. This is a curvature of the back that happens most commonly in adolescence. Because of this, it is more commonly found and treated in adolescence. Scoliosis is the name given to a spine that curves sideways to the left or to the right. Normal alignment of the spine will have it straight up and down with the vertebrae evenly supporting the back and body.
With scoliosis, the curve can range from severe to mild, with symptoms and risks varying based on the cause of the scoliosis. Often, patients will have an S or C shape to the spine, which is very apparent on X-rays and other imaging tests. When the scoliosis is severe, you can even see it by simply bending over and watching the shape of your spine and how it curves.
Ever been told to “sit up straight”. This is always good advice, as how you sit and stand really can determine if your spine has a curve to it. Your posture can determine if you develop scoliosis, but only in some cases. It often has no causes. However, these have been shown to increase your risk for developing scoliosis:
If you know that you have some of these risks, it is wise for you (and your children) to be screened for scoliosis. Early detection and treatment is the absolute best for preventing worsening problems as a child or adult ages. When scoliosis is starting to become more prominent, our patients generally feel symptoms such as:
Mild scoliosis without a specific cause is usually managed over time. This may involve back braces or small support devices that can be worn under the clothes to change posture and spine curvature. It may also include chiropractic or therapy sessions to help with muscle relaxation and realignment of the spine over time. We can manage symptoms with conservative options like:
At Olathe Chiropractic, our goal is to provide you with effective treatments to help get your body back and avoid surgery. If you’ve been recently diagnosed or have had scoliosis for quite some time, we can help! To get “back” to a healthier spine, call our Olathe Chiropractic office today at (913) 764-9393 to schedule your free consultation.