Scoliosis is a progressive, lateral curvature of the spine. When viewed from the side, the spine should have curves. But when viewed from the front, the spine should be straight.
What we look for:
- Elevated shoulder on one side
- Unequal muscle bulk around the spine
- Dropped pelvis on one side
- Rib hump
- Uneven chest shape
- Leg length inequality
Many forms of scoliosis are idiopathic in origin, meaning that there is no specific cause that can be attributed to its development.
Other causes include:
- Congenital- genetic predisposition
- Pathological- due to an underlying disease process eg various muscular dystrophies.
- Functional – due to an underlying injury causing abnormal joint and muscular function
The effects of scoliosis include: poor posture, shoulder humping, muscle weakness, and pain. In rare cases scoliosis can lead to heart and lung problems. If scoliosis is detected and treated early, patients can avoid these symptoms in many cases. If left untreated, scoliosis can sometimes require surgery.
Treatment of Scoliosis
Conservative scoliosis treatments have the best result when the condition is detected early and treated with appropriate and proven methods. By combining treatments into a program tailored for each patient and adjusted according to response it is often possible to avoid the more unpleasant, expensive or dangerous treatment options
- Specific Chiropractic Adjustments, designed to correct dysfunction of skeletal structures and reduce the torsion in the spinal cord
- Use of foot Orthotics and Heel Lifts to level the pelvis
- Exercises specifically designed to address balance, co-ordination and proprioceptive (body awareness) problems as well as stretch the muscles around the curves and correct changes in muscle fibres
- Nutritional support
Chiropractic care for scoliosis can be very effective, especially when the deformity is in the early stages. The treatment program requires a commitment by the patient and their family, but if undertaken enthusiastically it has the potential to prevent the need for much more drastic treatments later on.
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