Scoliosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine, often resulting in a “C” or “S” shape. Whether you have a minor case of scoliosis that leaves you with a slightly bent posture, or a severe case that causes significant pain, scoliosis can greatly affect day-to-day activities.
Although chiropractic care can’t fully reverse the abnormal curvature of a spine, chiropractic can help stop it from getting worse and help many scoliosis patients get relief from their symptoms without the use of drugs, surgery or other medical devices.
What Causes Scoliosis?
Scoliosis often occurs during puberty, when rapid growth can impact the way the spine forms. While some cases of scoliosis can be attributed to conditions such as cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy, the exact cause of most cases of scoliosis is unknown.
Common Symptoms of Scoliosis
Many people who are diagnosed with scoliosis never notice any symptoms or need to make any accommodations, but scoliosis often worsens without treatment and can lead to debilitating pain. Severe scoliosis can also lead to other health concerns, such as a decreased amount of space in the chest cavity, resulting in breathing difficulties.
Some common signs of scoliosis include:
- Uneven shoulders
- One shoulder blade appearing more prominent than the other
- Uneven waist
- One hip higher than the other
More severe cases of scoliosis can cause the spine to rotate, creating a side-to-side curve, which may make one side of the rib cage appear more prominent than the other.
How is Scoliosis Diagnosed and Treated?
A doctor can diagnose scoliosis by measuring the curve in the spine. A positive diagnosis is determined if the curve is greater than 10 degrees. The condition is considered significant if the curve is greater than 25 degrees, and severe if greater than 45 degrees.
Traditional medical options for patients with minor scoliosis are limited to regular x-rays to monitor the spinal curvature to see if it is getting any worse. For more severe cases, traditional treatment may include back braces, physical therapy, prescription medication to mask painful symptoms, and even surgery, including spinal fusions. However, for the majority of scoliosis cases there is an effective natural care option.
Chiropractic Care for Scoliosis Treatment
Chiropractic treatment cannot reverse a severe curvature of the spine, but it can prevent the curvature from getting worse and it can help manage symptoms to improve quality of life.
Regular adjustments of the spine can aid in proper spinal alignment and reduce muscle tension, preventing the curvature from getting worse with age. Chiropractic adjustments can also improve flexibility and range of motion while alleviating much of the pain.
In our office, we also offer additional modalities that can improve the symptoms of scoliosis in conjunction with chiropractic:
Custom Orthotics - Proper spine alignment starts at the feet. Our custom orthotics by Foot Levelers help to maintain balance in your body by supporting the three arches in your foot, all of which are critically important in maintaining proper alignment of the spine.
Cold Laser Therapy - Therapeutic laser is a non-invasive treatment that speeds up the body’s healing process through the production of ATP in the mitochondria of the cell. Therapeutic lasers can heal soft tissue injuries and reduce inflammation, swelling, and pain that may result from an abnormal curvature of the spine.
Dr. Todd, our chiropractor at Stow Family Chiropractic offers chiropractic treatment for scoliosis in Stow, MA. We are also near surrounding towns such as Maynard, Acton, Bolton, Hudson, and Sudbury. To schedule an initial consultation, contact our office at 978-897-1770.