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June is Scoliosis Awareness Month

Scoliosis xray being examined

A Guide to Scoliosis: Treatment, Symptoms, and Causes

Scoliosis occurs when the spine curves sideways. Although you may associate the condition with teenagers, it can affect adults too. An estimated 7 million people in the United States have scoliosis, according to the National Scoliosis Foundation.

Scoliosis Symptoms

The bony vertebrae that make up your spine normally form a straight line from the bottom of your back to the top of your neck. If you have scoliosis, your spine curves to the side, forming an "S" or "C" shape.

Scoliosis symptoms vary depending on the degree of curvature and may include:

  • Pain in the back, neck, shoulders, hips, or ribs
  • Uneven hips, shoulders, shoulder blades, or waist
  • Muscle spasms

If the curvature progresses, the vertebrae may begin to press on nerves and organs, causing difficulty breathing, heart issues, or constipation. Limited mobility and physical deformity may also occur.

Scoliosis in Children

Scoliosis usually becomes apparent during growth spurts in the pre-teen and teenage years. Fortunately, most children who develop scoliosis only have mild curvatures and may never need treatment. It's not always possible to determine the cause of scoliosis. The condition may be more likely to occur after an injury that affects the spine or if your child has muscular dystrophy or cerebral palsy.

A scoliosis diagnosis can be a surprise to both parents and children. The condition is often detected during annual wellness exams or scoliosis screenings at school.

Your child's doctor may not recommend treatment unless the curve progresses beyond 30 degrees. If your child has been diagnosed with scoliosis, their spine will be X-rayed periodically. One or more of these treatments may be needed if the curvature continues to progress:

  • Physical Therapy: Physical therapy exercises strengthen the muscles that support the back and improve flexibility.
  • A Brace: Wearing a back brace while your child is still growing can stop the curvature from growing worse in some cases. Braces are worn under clothing for up to 23 hours per day, depending on the type.

Scoliosis in Adults

Scoliosis that begins during childhood can continue to affect you during adulthood. You may experience minor worsening of your curvature as you grow older, which can trigger or worsen back pain, stiffness, and muscle cramps. Numbness in the legs may be a problem if a nerve becomes pinched.

You might develop scoliosis for the first time as an adult if the discs that cushion your spine begin to break down or you develop arthritis or spinal stenosis. Spinal stenosis occurs due to the narrowing of the spinal canal that protects your spinal cord. Adult scoliosis can cause pain or numbness in your back and legs. Some treatment options include chiropractic, physical therapy, and short-term use of braces.

How Chiropractic Treatment Can Help

Chiropractic treatment may help ease scoliosis-related pain in both children and adults. When vertebrae become misaligned, they can press on nerves, causing pain. Muscle tension and spasms may also occur if your spine isn't properly aligned. Regular chiropractic treatments improve spinal alignment and may also decrease inflammation, improve nerve function, and increase flexibility and range of motion.

Twenty-eight adult scoliosis patients saw improvements in disability, pain, and Cobb angle in a study that appeared in the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine in 2011. Cobb angle is used to determine the degree of side-to-side curvature. The patients completed a six-month exercise-based chiropractic program that began after the clinical part of their treatment was over.

Chiropractic treatment offers a simple, natural way to help you manage your scoliosis symptoms.

Sources:

National Scoliosis Foundation: Information and Support

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases: Scoliosis in Children and Teens

Mayo Clinic: Scoliosis

Journal of Chiropractic Medicine: Outcomes for Adult Scoliosis Patients Receiving Chiropractic Rehabilitation: a 24-month Retrospective Analysis, 9/11

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    Great people -- friendly, caring, knowledgeable and accommodating. Doc Eulo and his staff do the job with the utmost of attention to patient needs and concerns. The range of services offered by this practice is considerable, including things beyond the ordinary chiropractics such as orthotic appliances with professional evaluation and fitting, dietary evaluations and supplements, and USDOT Physical Examinations for drivers of commercial motor vehicles.

    - C P.

    Doc Eulo is nothing short of amazing. The staff is excellent. I said the same thing about them 21 years ago when I first starting going to Dr. Eulo. Back then he took care of me and my aching back when I was pregnant, and even adjusted my newborn!

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    Dr. Eulo is awesome, he worked on my aches and pains in my back and upper legs by exercising and massaging them within a 6 month period 3 times a week I can truly say I am pain free, his caring and kindness helps too. I was able to connect not also with him by with his family too, they treated me with loving kindness, I will never forget him and will recommend him to anyone who needs a good Doctor.

    - Ollie H.

    Dr Eulo is the best of the best and he is the coolest doctor that I know. August 2015 I was involved in a car accident, someone referred him to me, the first day I walked into his office I was in so much pain from my head to toe, I was a mess, three times a week for 6 months he was working on my aches and pains and I am here to tell you I'm pain free. Every time I walked in his office he put on my R & B Oldies did I say he was the coolest yes I did, he makes you feel very comfortable like one o

    - Constance G.

    Went to Dr. Eulo for treatment from an auto accident. The Dr. and his staff are very professional and makes your visit very pleasant. His knowledge and practice helped me very much with my injuries and I'm glad I chose Dr. Eulo as my chiropractor. If you're looking for a chiropractor, Eulo Chiropractic Center is the place to go!

    - William B.

    It is always a pleasure to go see Dr. Eulo. He is a very positive, caring and knowledgeable doctor. You will always leave his office with a smile on your face. His office is beautiful and the staff is very friendly and professional. Dr. Eulo has successfully treated me for a frozen shoulder when an orthopedic surgeon thought that I would need surgery. My shoulder is fine now thanks to Dr. Eulo. He has also treated me for severe back spasms when I could hardly walk. Within a few days of treatment

    - Carol S.

    Dr. Eulo's treatments for my neck and back pain have been super helpful. He gives a thorough adjustment of neck, back and all joints and follows it up by a nice, relaxing massage bed. I leave the office feeling restored and like my body is back in it's best working condition. The office is neat and professional and Dr. Eulo is very down to earth, spends time with me and truly cares about my overall health. I've been to many chiropractors over many years, so I know a good chiropractor when I see

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    Dr. Eulo is the BEST chiropractor, hands down. The staff is friendly, the office is always clean, and Dr. Eulo is the nicest doctor. I have anxiety when it comes to doctors and going for "check ups" but Dr. Eulo makes me feel comfortable. I wish he could be my doctor for everything! I would recommend Dr. Eulo in a heart beat.

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