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Spinal Health Week: Scoliosis

Scoliosis is a sideways curve of your spine! This is an abnormal and progressive condition of the spine in which when the spine is viewed from the front it does not look straight.

These curvatures of the spine can be large or small and will vary between patients.

Most often this condition has no known cause, in which case it is called idiopathic scoliosis.

While the cause is unknown, idiopathic scoliosis does tend to run in families.

Some people mistakenly think that carrying heavy backpacks or sleeping on the side could cause scoliosis, but that is not the case.

Who is at risk of Scoliosis?

Around 3% of the population is estimated to suffer from some form of scoliosis.

Scoliosis is usually first detected in children between the ages of 10 and 15.

However, it can occur in younger children aged 3 to 10 years (juvenile scoliosis) and in babies (infantile scoliosis).

Scoliosis can also occur in adults with no previous history, due to spinal degeneration and advancing age.

Scoliosis is 8x more prevalent in females and the most common age for females to show signs is between the ages of 10-12. For males, the most common age to develop signs and symptoms is ages 13-14.

After the age of 60 30% of the population will be suffering from some degree of degenerative scoliosis.

How do I know if my child has Scoliosis?

There are several ‘warning signs’ to look for to indicate that perhaps you or someone you know has scoliosis.

  1. Shoulders asymmetrical
  2. Prominent shoulder blade
  3. Visible curve
  4. Hips asymmetrical
  5. Waist asymmetrical

Should you notice any one or more of these signs, you should consult a trained Clinician for a full assessment.

What can I do if I have Scoliosis?

For mild scoliosis, you may not need treatment. Instead, your practitioner might watch you and take X-rays occasionally to see if it’s getting worse or progressing. Some children grow out of scoliosis.

If you or your child need treatment, your practitioner might suggest some of the following:

There are many possible causes of scoliosis in our body. Whilst chiropractors may not be able to ‘correct’ a scoliosis, scoliosis causes uneven loads on the spine.

This can cause spinal misalignment and nervous system interference.

When this happens, the control system of our body will no longer be working properly.

This can lead to problems such as poor body position sense affecting posture and movement.

The nervous system also controls many other aspects of your child’s health, such as digestion and immune function.

Chiropractors are experts in diagnosis and management of spine and nervous system related conditions.

For more information on scoliosis or to book a consult with one of our trained professionals please call us on (02) 6257 9400.

If you would like some more information about the spine and nervous system and how it relates to your health, please check out the other articles on our Facebook page or go to our website: