What is Scoliosis?
I always heard that it was called curvature of the spine. The spine has abnormal curvatures in the upper and or the lower lumbar regions. Scoliosis is more common in females than in males. The cause of scoliosis is unknown (idiopathic). If Scoliosis develops before a child is three years old it is called infantile idiopathic Scoliosis. If Scoliosis develops between 3 and 10 years of age it is called juvenile idiopathic scoliosis. If it develops after 10 years it is called adolescent scoliosis. Most people that have scoliosis are adolescent girls.
There are three different kinds of scoliosis. Functional scoliosis is caused by another problem in the body. The spine is normal but because of a problem such as one leg being shorter than the other, it causes a curvature of the spine. This can be helped by putting a wedge in a shoe to level out the spine. If there is another physical problem that is causing it, taking care of that will also take care of the Scoliosis.
The second kind of scoliosis is called Neuromuscular. In this case the bones of the spine are malformed. This can be from a birth defect. The bones of the spine may have not developed properly or they did not separate during fetal development. This kind of scoliosis is congenital. This is the most severe kind of scoliosis and it needs the most aggressive treatment. Sometimes surgery is indicated. It is important to get more than one opinion if you are facing this kind of decision.
I personally know what this kind of Scoliosis is like. I was born with Neuromuscular Scoliosis. I inherited it from my father. His is not as severe as mine. I also had a first cousin on my maternal side that was born with Spina Bifida; so I could have inherited from that side of my family too. I have malformed vertebrae in my spine. One physician said that I would have to have surgery or I would be paralyzed when I became older. Another orthopedic surgeon told me I should not have surgery. I could end up paralyzed from surgery. What has helped me is chiropractic therapy, acupuncture and massage. I also do water aerobics. When I am in the water I don’t have the pain that I experience when I try to do regular floor exercises. Yoga is extremely helpful too as it helps strengthen your bones and muscles and makes you more flexible. I didn’t experience pain as a child from the Scoliosis. I will say that I have experienced a lot of pain with it since I had children. This is common. It is very important to keep your bones strong and to get exercise. You need to keep flexible and develop your muscles.
For less severe cases such as in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis there is better treatment. Exercise, chiropractic treatment and bracing often help with this kind of scoliosis. It is also important to keep your bones and muscles strong.
For more information you can find it at these addresses.
Where can people get more information on scoliosis?
National Scoliosis Foundation
5 Cabot Place
Stoughton, MA 02072