Experiencing Scoliosis? Here’s How Chiropractic Care Can Help
Do you feel like your body is uneven, where one side of your shoulder is lower than the other, or one hip is higher than the other? In addition, do you experience difficulty breathing and are constantly experiencing back pain? If your answer is ‘yes’ to any of these statements, you may have scoliosis.
What is Scoliosis?
Scoliosis is a condition where your spine is abnormally curved, either in a C or S-shape, instead of maintaining its natural, straight shape. Scoliosis can be experienced by people of all ages, including children. In many cases, it can be caused by genetics, so it is advisable to get yourself checked out by a medical professional.
FUN FACT: Approximately, 2% of Singaporeans experience scoliosis, and is often experienced by teenage girls. If you feel like you’re alone in this, fear not – you’re most definitely not the only one!
There are essentially three types of scoliosis:
- Idiopathic Scoliosis – The cause of scoliosis is usually undetected – Over 80% experience idiopathic scoliosis. Often occurs in adolescent girls.
- Congenital Scoliosis – Results from birth defects, normally discovered in infants. Little to no pain is experienced. However, the fusing of ribs can occur as they develop.
- Neuromuscular Scoliosis – Usually experienced by people who have pre-existing conditions such as muscular dystrophy and cerebral palsy.
How is Scoliosis Diagnosed By A Chiropractor?
Chiropractors diagnose a patient experiencing scoliosis when their spine is curved to 10 degrees or more. If your spine is curved exceeding 25 to 30 degrees, it is considered significant scoliosis. If it is curved exceeding 45-60 degrees, it is considered severe scoliosis. Using the Cobb Angle Measurement, the condition of your spine is physically examined through an MRI scan, x-ray, spinal radiograph or CT scan. Depending on the age of the patient, the diagnoses will be classified as:
- Infantile (aged 0-3)
- Juvenile (aged 3-10)
- Adolescent (aged 10-18)
- Adult (aged 18 and above)
FUN FACT: Did you know that world-class athlete, Usain Bolt also lives with scoliosis? Even with the condition, he is thriving!
What are the treatments for Scoliosis?
Scoliosis is a permanent condition.
Depending on the severity of scoliosis, there are three main ways to deal with it: bracing, spinal surgery and observation.
Bracing is usually recommended to adolescents who have a curvature of 25-40 degrees to prevent further damage to their spine until they reach skeletal maturity when they get older.
In cases where the curvature of the spine is severe, spinal surgery is recommended, especially for patients who are experiencing neuromuscular scoliosis, as bracing and observation would not be effective treatments.
If you’re someone who does not want to consider surgery or wear a brace, chiropractic care is one of the best go-to options to treat your scoliosis!
How Can Chiropractic Care Treat Scoliosis?
For starters, chiropractors will recommend a number of exercises that can help you minimise the pain caused by scoliosis, such as Schroth exercises. And what makes it great is that these exercises are suitable for all ages!
Even if you don’t have scoliosis, exercises such as one-arm reaches, split stances with your arms reached or even yoga stretches can help alleviate the pressure and straighten out your spine.
Because scoliosis is a permanent condition, we must remember that we can only treat the condition itself and not its symptoms.
Can Chiropractic Care Really Treat Scoliosis Permanently?
The short answer is: No. However, frequent treatments can help to reduce the spine’s curvature, reduce muscle inflammation and improve overall posture. A customised treatment plan will be provided based on a case by case basis, and it must be practised routinely to achieve the best results. A brace may also be recommended in some cases to aid treatment.
In the initial stages of treatments, patients are required to receive chiropractic care on a regular basis. When pain and discomfort subsides, patients will then move on to the maintenance phase where fewer visits to the chiropractor can be scheduled, or as when needed by the patient.
What Are The Benefits of Chiropractic Care?
If you’ve read it this far, congratulations; you’re one step further to discovering the benefits of chiropractic care when it comes to treating scoliosis!
Other than being a great option to relieve discomfort and pain, it is also a very non-invasive way of treating the condition. Who would want to go through the tough, arduous process of spinal surgery if they could avoid it, right?
There is less risk involved in chiropractic care compared to surgery. You would not need to worry about bacterial infection or wounds not healing properly that can cause further medical attention. In addition, chiropractic care is relatively cheaper compared to undergoing surgery.
Even if you don’t experience scoliosis, chiropractic care is great for other conditions, such as migraines, frozen shoulders, neck stiffness, and much more. If you’re feeling stiff in your back, a visit to the chiropractor can relieve that tension that you’re feeling in your joints. It can treat your pain the same way as medicine does, without worrying about side effects.
Convinced? Visit Elite Spine Centres now!
Are you finally convinced that chiropractic care can change lives with people living and living without scoliosis? Of course, other strategies should be incorporated to make your lifestyle a healthier one. Fret not, we can help!
If you’re looking for one close to home in Singapore, come visit us at Elite Spine Centres as treating patients with scoliosis is one of our specialities, where our doctors can do a more in-depth examination of your condition and provide the best treatment plan for you to get you feeling better as soon as possible so that you can return to living your life pain free.
Remember, having scoliosis does not mean it’s the end of the world. In fact, your life has probably just begun! Come book a consultation with us now!
Dr. Michael Bryant, doctor of chiropractic and member of the Alliance of Chiropractic (AOC) Singapore, graduated summa cum laude from Life University in Atlanta and received several distinctions, as well as completing additional coursework and NBCE certification in physiotherapy. Michael Bryant is the founder of Elite Spine Centers. Read more about Dr. Mike here.