What Is Scoliosis?
Scoliosis is an unnatural, lateral curve of the spine, which can be caused by one or more misaligned vertebrae, and can range from a minor issue to a significant problem. The body always compensates for the effects of scoliosis no matter how slight the curve.
When the body compensates for scoliosis, it is doing its best to keep the head in a level position while supporting normal function, such as balance. However, these compensations are not correcting the problems and can result in muscular imbalances, further causing unhealthy curvature of the spine.
One of the biggest challenges of scoliosis is that there is no identifiable cause in 80% of cases. The other 20% of scoliosis cases are a result of disorders such as muscular dystrophy, spina bifida, or some other issues related to spinal misalignment.
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How Is Scoliosis Identified?
Scoliosis is normally identified during either a back-to-school physical exam or a scoliosis health screening conducted by a school nurse. Occasionally, a sports coach, dance instructor, or parent might observe that a child’s shoulders are uneven in height, their hips are not level, or their ribcage is partially rotated. These signs usually lead parents to do an internet search to identify the cause of their child’s symptoms or to schedule a consultation at a nearby chiropractor for scoliosis testing.
Life Source Chiropractic carries out detailed scoliosis testing which includes the forward bend test. Many individuals may recall receiving this standard scoliosis evaluation from a school nurse. However, we don’t stop there. As the child moves around and adopts various positions, we observe the spine. We can identify problems and formulate a targeted exercise plan as a result of this movement analysis.
We also like to obtain a complete picture of the child’s life including their health history while the parents are in our office. It is our experience that we can build a healthy living plan that functions well for them by getting all possible information about the child’s regular habits and lifestyle choices.
We may occasionally refer a patient to a nearby professional for additional x-rays or other needed tests. If a scoliosis curve is so severe that it requires surgical intervention, we are happy to offer supportive measures after the surgery to promote long-term recovery. We want more for the children in our community than just relief from symptoms. Our goal is to assist in giving them the greatest possible start in life.
Complications of Scoliosis
If left untreated, scoliosis can lead to a wide variety of issues. Falls and other injuries are more likely to occur because the spine is connected to the head, neck, and limbs, so any misalignments can affect coordination. The spinal nerves are located inside the spinal cord and deliver impulses between the brain and all the other nerves in the body. These impulses are signals between the senses and the moving body. They support us in acting on our reality and processing the experiences we have.
The spine is constructed of stacking vertebrae with precise curvature intended to allow simple, pain-free movement when everything works as it should. Spinal misalignment due to scoliosis can throw off this balance and cause pain in the neck, shoulders, back, and buttocks due to nerve dysfunction and unequal muscle strength. The spinal bones can become exceedingly painful from too much wear and tear.
Misalignment of the spine can cause nerve pain all over the body even though the spine is located in the center of the body. This is due to the fact that the spinal nerves are connected to each other, the brain, and the nerves throughout the body. Sciatica is an example of this and occurs when the compressed sciatic nerve causes sharp, shooting pain that radiates down the back of the leg. The beginning of the sciatic nerve is located in the lumbar region of the spine, so any deviation in this fragile, spinal curve can result in painful compression of the sciatic nerve.
Normal mobility and organ function can be hindered by damaged spinal nerves. It is not shocking that some patients with scoliosis have diminished feeling or function in their limbs, fingers, or toes because the spinal nerves link to every part of the body. Additionally, they may have altered breathing, digestion, and other organ functions.
In extreme cases, scoliosis can inhibit normal breathing and lung expansion. One scoliosis problem that many patients find surprising is that they leak spinal fluid. This fluid leak can result in strange symptoms including nausea, impaired hearing, and headaches that strangely resolve while lying down.
Symptoms of Scoliosis
Since the entire body is connected by the spine, one frequent sign of scoliosis are shoulders, waist, or hips that are uneven. The ribs and muscles are more pronounced on the side of the scoliosis curve because the spine often twists in that direction. A curvature that is felt as the child bends forward is the hallmark sign of scoliosis.
Due to unbalanced muscle strength and abnormal stress patterns that scoliosis places on the spine, it can cause numbness, pain, and weakness. Although these symptoms are most common in the lower back, scoliosis can also affect nerve dysfunction in other areas of the body as well. Thankfully, chiropractic care focuses on correcting spinal problems to restore nerve function.
How Our Chiropractors Help Scoliosis Symptoms
The main goal of chiropractic care for scoliosis is to correct spinal issues that impair normal feeling and function. Life Source Chiropractic combines in-office pain-reduction techniques with healthy lifestyle recommendations to prolong and improve the effects of our care.
When people first decide to visit a chiropractor, they visualize chiropractic adjustment, or spinal manipulation. Life Source Chiropractic is able to resolve subluxations, or spinal misalignments, using this hands-on technique. These subluxations disrupt normal functioning of the nerves resulting in discomfort and dysfunction all over the body.
It’s a general misunderstanding that a scoliosis curve can be eliminated by chiropractic adjustments. The amount of force it would take to straighten a scoliosis curve would cause the spine to break, producing more damage than it would repair. We are always careful during procedures, but the spine commonly makes a bit of noise during an adjustment, and some patients may feel a little sore following therapy. Chiropractic care gently aids in nerve health and can be a beneficial supplement to any required interventions, including surgery.
Whole Body Vibration
Whole body vibration therapy as part of scoliosis care can alleviate pain in the neck and back as well as improve the spine’s flexibility. It has proven to be effective in diminishing inflammation and pain, loosening up rigid muscles, and improving posture. Unlike a brace or strict exercise plan, whole body vibration doesn’t cause patients distress or force them out of their comfort zone. The sessions are short and painless and can lead to significant benefits.
Benefits of Chiropractic Care for Scoliosis
Consult With Our Scoliosis Chiropractor
Are you interested in finding out what our chiropractor for scoliosis can do for your child? We support your endeavor to get the most accurate information available. Ask other parents for suggestions, do some credible online research, and call Life Source Chiropractic. We’d be delighted to answer any questions you may have and make a scoliosis appointment for your child today.