If You’re a Parent Whose Child Has Just Been Diagnosed, What Should You Understand About Scoliosis and Treatment Effectiveness?

Scoliosis is a spine deformity that affects at least 2-3 percent of the population in the US. This percent translates to 6 to 9 million people in America. This condition can develop during infancy or early childhood. However, the likely onset age is between 10 to 15 years.

Given scoliosis prevalence in children, parents have a significant role to play in diagnosis and treatment. This article will provide a rundown of things you should know about scoliosis if your child gets diagnosed.

Parents, this is what you should know about scoliosis

As a parent, when your child is diagnosed with scoliosis, you need to understand a few things about the condition. These are:

• Understanding the types of scoliosis

Scoliosis can either be idiopathic, neuromuscular, or congenital. Of the three, idiopathic scoliosis is the most common, constituting about 80 percent of the total cases. Idiopathic scoliosis is eight times likely to affect girls compared to boys. Its cause is not known.

Neuromuscular scoliosis is the second most common type of scoliosis. It’s a spine deformity that arises from neuromuscular conditions, such as cerebral palsy and spinal cord injury.

Congenital scoliosis results from an embryological malformation of either one or more vertebrae in your spine. Since its present at birth, this type of scoliosis is likely to be diagnosed early.

• Early diagnosis is critical

If you are a parent, it is pivotal that your child receives periodic medical checkup to diagnose conditions like scoliosis early. If scoliosis is picked before a growth spurt forms, there are high chances that your doctor will prevent a higher curve from forming.

• Signs of scoliosis

As a parent, you might watch out for the following symptoms for early diagnosis of scoliosis in your child. According to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS), the symptoms of scoliosis are:

• Uneven shoulders

• Uneven waistline

• One of the hips appears more raised than the other

• Ribs prominent on either side of the body

• Entire body leaning on one side

These symptoms are usually discovered during pediatric checks. Also, as a parent, you might notice these signs while bathing or dressing your child.

However, at the age of 10 to 15 years, you may not be involved in your children’s activities, such as bathing or dressing. It’s, therefore, prudent you schedule medical checkups for your older kids.

• Causes of scoliosis

Parents: you are not at fault if your child develops scoliosis. Once your child is diagnosed with scoliosis, you might ask the doctor what you could have done to prevent scoliosis. For most cases of scoliosis, there are no known causes or preventive measures.

Even though the less common types of scoliosis are linked to genetic factors, other factors that can cause scoliosis include:

• Spinal injury

• Congenital disabilities

• Neuromuscular conditions

A popular misconception is that scoliosis is caused by bad posture or carrying heavy luggage. While the two can lead to other spine conditions, there is no scientific proof that they can cause scoliosis.

How is scoliosis treated?

As a parent, you are eager about your child’s treatment once they are diagnosed with scoliosis. Fortunately, there are available treatment options. However, before treatment, your doctor will consider the following issues to determine the best option.

• The extent of the curvature

• Maturity of the spine

• Curve pattern

• Location of the curve

Once your doctor assesses the above, they will recommend the following treatment options:

Observation: Most scoliosis cases are mild and do not require any treatment at all. The doctor will recommend observing your child every four to six months to monitor the curve’s growth. This checkup may continue up to adolescence.

Bracing: Braces are effective for children whose spines are yet to reach maturity. The aim is to stop the curve from progressing. Over the years, there have been complaints about the discomfort of braces. However, modern designs allow fitting under the arms and not around the neck, refining comfort.

How effective are braces? They are largely effective if used in full compliance. Studies show that they stop the progression of the curve in children by about 80 percent.

For optimal effectiveness, ensure that your child wears the brace at least 16 to 23 hours a day. Also, make sure that your child’s brace is checked regularly to ensure that it fits properly.

Surgery: It’s recommended when scoliosis deteriorates with time. The surgery aims to prevent spinal deformity and to restrict the progression of the curve.

Surgery is an effective treatment option if done at an early stage. By then, it’s less complicated as less of the spine requires fusion.

However, with surgery, risks present in the form of infections, nerve damage, and bleeding. Consider these risks carefully versus the benefits before subjecting your child to surgery. Ultimately, let surgery be the last treatment option.

Where to go for scoliosis treatment

If you are a resident parent living in Birmingham, Al, and its environs, and your child has been diagnosed or need a checkup for scoliosis, do not worry. Email or phone Integrative Chiropractic Health & Wellness today at 205-637-1363. We offer scoliosis treatment options that will restore your child’s health and spirit.

Call Now ButtonCall Now