Scoliosis is a condition that most people are somewhat aware of from a young age. For many years, elementary age children have been tested for scoliosis in school. And while the testing is typical in school age children, scoliosis can affect people of all ages including into adulthood. While scoliosis is not a mystery diagnosis, there are many things that are misunderstood or overlooked about this progressive disease today.
Scoliosis affects the curvature of the spine, which results in an unlevel body and can bring about all types of symptoms from headaches and leg, knee and hip pain to chronic fatigue and mood swings; even digestive problems and disruptions in the menstrual cycle have been reported. Unfortunately, the specific cause of the disease can be hard to nail down. In fact, the National Institute of Health estimates that in more than 80% of all cases, the specific cause is not known. While studies progress into the causes, scientists are hopeful that by studying the central nervous system in scoliosis patients, they will be able to identify specific underlying causes. In the meantime, here are some facts that you should know regarding scoliosis:
- Females have a 10 times higher risk of curve progression that males and due to that higher rate of progression, girls need treatment more often than boys.
- Scoliosis can be genetic
- There is a significant correlation between scoliosis and the development of osteoporosis; people with scoliosis are more likely to develop gall bladder problems
- There is increasing evidence that poor nutrition plays a role in the development and progression of scoliosis
A healthy spine can twist and bend forward, backward and sideways, always returning to the midline. For patients with scoliosis, the degree of fixed curvature prevents them from returning fully to the midline. For those who develop scoliosis, it has been the traditional practice to try to straighten the spine, many times through the use of braces or even surgery. But is a straight spine really necessary to have a healthy, functional spine? Maybe not. Perhaps, what patients need is the ability to move freely in all directions with ease and that can be achieved through exercises that rely on the power of the brain, rather than uncomfortable braces or unnecessary surgeries.
As research and study continues, it is now known that scoliosis is a multifaceted disease that compromises all five of the body’s systems: neurological, digestive, hormonal, muscular and our bones. These newer findings recognize that these systems of the body work in concert and when one of the systems is disrupted, the other systems can suffer as well. It is when we recognize that the brain organizes all movements and can change itself through out our lifetime, that we see the exciting possibilities for the brain to develop new connections and patterns, reversing the symptoms of diseases like scoliosis. Scoliosis responds very well to non-surgical treatments such as Chiropractic Neurology care plans. Today, it is very rare for a patient to have to go the surgery route when faced with a scoliosis diagnosis.
To bring the awareness of scoliosis, promote scoliosis education and bring new techniques and treatments to the forefront, on June 29, 2013 The Scoliosis Association of the UK held the first annual International Scoliosis Awareness Day. Among the topics discussed were breakthroughs in treatment or management of balance, mobility, strength, breathing and pain relief. All of these discussions were centered on the brain’s plasticity, or ability to change itself, to create new patterns and freedom of movement despite the spine’s curvature, something that Chiropractic Neurology has understood and put into practice for many years. In fact, Chiropractic Neurology’s brand of brain-based care and the working relationship between the brain and central nervous system make it an ideal option for those seeking treatment for scoliosis and its diverse symptoms.
If you or a loved one would like to know more about how Chiropractic Neurology can help you, please contact Dr. Marc Ellis today at the Georgia Chiropractic Neurology Center.