The spine is not just one bone, rather it’s made up of many bones that make up the vertebrae. When people have a side-to-side curve in the spine, it’s often a sign of scoliosis. Scoliosis is determined when the curvature of the spine measuring 10 degrees or greater as seen on an x-ray. According to John Hopkins Medicine, the cause of scoliosis is unknown in more than 80% of cases. The good news? The majority of scoliosis cases do not require surgical or bracing treatment.
What is Scoliosis?
Scoliosis is a condition where the spine has a curvature. In most patients, the curve follows an ’s’ or ‘c’ shape. While with many patients the cause of scoliosis is unknown, it can be caused by conditions like muscular dystrophy or cerebral palsy.
Most cases of scoliosis are mild, however when scoliosis happens to children it can cause growing difficulties as they age. If a curve gets too severe, it can cause serious problems, like affecting a patient’s ability to breathe.
What Causes the Curve?
We don’t know for sure what causes it to develop, but it’s been linked to genetics, neuromuscular conditions, birth defects, or injury. It’s more likely to begin during childhood around age 10, and according to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, girls are at a higher risk than their male counterparts.
In non-severe scoliosis cases, there’s usually no treatment needed. However, especially in children, it’s important to monitor their spines closely to make sure it doesn’t worsen as they continue growing. Symptoms of scoliosis, according to Mayo Clinic, include:
- Uneven shoulders or waist
- One shoulder blade more prominent than the other
- One hip higher than the other
- In severe cases, ribs will stick out further on one side
It can also result in:
- Shortness of breath
- Digestive problems
- Menstrual cycle and fertility issues
- Leg, hip, and knee pain
- Chronic fatigue
How Do You Know if You Have the Curve?
Your doctor can diagnose scoliosis. Oftentimes, it’s a child’s pediatrician that will notice signs of scoliosis in their early years. However, sometimes it can begin without caregivers knowing, and not becoming noticeable until the children are a bit older.
Though the majority of scoliosis cases don’t require patients to seek surgical or bracing treatment, we believe that early scoliosis treatment is crucial to prevent those major life-altering treatments like surgery or bulky braces to be needed in the future.
How to Treat Scoliosis at Spine Correction Center
“Watch and wait” for scoliosis isn’t the correct way to go about treating scoliosis. Here at Spine Correction Center of the Rockies, we offer two treatment methods:
- Standard Treatment – this involves treatments over about three months with ~30 minute sessions, but they can last up to two hours depending on the severity of your diagnosis. In the appointment, we will start off with warming your body up so the spine can be easily manipulated. Then, we use rehabilitative techniques to retrain your body to stabilize the curve. Most people who do the standard treatment with us live nearby, so it’s easy to come see us for their recurring appointments.
- Intensive Treatment – this is designed for patients who live further away and can’t come in regularly. This treatment is done over a 1-2 week timeline. The length of appointment time will vary based on your individual treatment plan. At these appointments we will see you for up to three treatments a day to help stabilize and reduce your curve. On average, you can see a reduction up to 50%. Once this is complete, you will go back home with the knowledge to continue rehab to help maintain your treatment.
Schedule a Free Consultation
If you’re ready to put an end to pain caused by scoliosis, call us today for a free consultation: (970)-658-5115. We can do consultations in person, online, or over the phone. We’re here to get your spine back on track, let us help!