June is National Scoliosis Awareness Month, and there are many interesting facts, myths, and pieces of art related to the condition. If you have scoliosis, you may have heard these already. On the other hand, if you are learning about scoliosis for the first time, these five unique facts might take you by surprise.
A novel about scoliosis
Many teenagers over the past four decades have learned about scoliosis by reading Judy Blume’s novel, “Deenie.” In the book, a teenager deals with the transitional period of being diagnosed and treated for scoliosis. Along the way, she struggles with the corrective brace that cuts through her new clothes. She also deals with the social aspects of being different than other kids. However, in the past 40 years, the braces for treating scoliosis have changed significantly. For example, today’s braces do not de-emphasize a female’s breasts and are considerably less bulky than the type the character Deenie described.
Scoliosis empowerment support group
Did you know that there was a specific support group in place to empower young girls with scoliosis? According to Curvy Girls founder Leah Stoltz, when girls are diagnosed with scoliosis, they often grow silent. For this reason, Stoltz has actively maintained a website-based support group specifically for scoliosis-diagnosed girls. Stoltz also talks with social workers and guidance counselors about the special needs of girls with scoliosis.
High scoliosis statistics
In America, the statistics related to scoliosis are as high as one in 40. Regardless, most are considered mild cases and the causes for scoliosis are generally unknown. Once diagnosed, a child will be monitored with X-rays. If the condition becomes severe, surgery or braces may be used to correct the curvature of the spine.
Do not forget about kyphosis
In the field of medicine, there are two conditions that affect the way the spine grows. While scoliosis is an S or C-shaped curvature of the spine from one side of the back to the other, there is a similar condition that bends the spine into the front of the abdomen from the back. Called kyphosis, it can occur when there is a failure for the spine to form or a failure of segmentation of the spine.
Silliest scoliosis myth
On a number of scoliosis websites, there are doctors writing about a common myth. Evidently, many people believe that heavy backpacks cause children to get scoliosis. This is refuted by medical science and is not a proven cause for scoliosis.