Most of us can remember back to when we were in school, many times during gym class when we had a screening for our backs. But what did we really know about it and did we really care. But now your child has just come home with a note saying he might have a scoliosis. Panic sets in at first. How come you didn’t catch it sooner, what do I do now...
This seems to be a very common scenario because most parents don’t know what scoliosis is, how to detect it in their children or what you can do as a treatment.
Scoliosis very simply is a curvature of the spine. When you look at your child from the back you can see a sideways bend compared to a normal spine, which is straight. It can be very damaging for a child’s health in many ways.
In very advanced scoliosis cases it can put a tremendous amount of pressure on the heart and lungs. It also can lead to arthritis that is advanced in the areas under maximum stress. Ultimately, your child’s posture is affected which can alter your child’s athletic performance, self esteem and daily activities.
There are essentially two types of scoliosis, fixed and functional. Fixed scoliosis is primarily caused by certain genetic malformations while functional scoliosis which is by far more common, and affects females and males proportionately simply has “no known cause.”
Past practice of scoliosis treatments were a wait- and-see attitude, body casts, corsets, physiotherapy and the ever popular spinal surgeries where any number of steel Harrington rods were screwed into the spine in the hope of straightening it.
As a parent you need to be aware that scoliosis does have a cause. It doesn’t just happen overnight where your child sleeps wrong and now has a curve. It has been happening for a while and most likely your child is unaware of the problem.
Since the day your child was born his or her body has been continually changing and adapting, from sitting- up, crawling, walking and other complex movements; your child’s body and nervous system was learning and adapting. Such a developing nervous system is not always able to distinguish between good and bad data, and therefore responds to both. Add this up from birth to now preteen years and your child’s body has developed a pretty good habit of bad behaviors and postures. But it can be changed! Scoliosis can be reversible with chiropractic care from a dedicated chiropractor who specializes in children.
In the care of children, a pediatric chiropractor is mainly concerned with the constant, chronic “bad” information that is being passed from the brain to the rest of the body. As a chiropractor it is of paramount importance to prevent and eliminate this faulty programming before improper and inefficient habits are learned. The best scoliosis treatments should always start with a chiropractor who has experience with working with children and their developing nervous systems. We see vertebral subluxations as a major threat to a child’s health and well being. All children should be checked by a chiropractor with pediatric experience to be sure your child’s growing body and nervous system are learning the proper habits for a strong and healthy childhood and lifelong spine health.