What is scoliosis?
Scoliosis is a sideways (lateral) bending of the spine that shows up as abnormal posture and then, if left untreated, deformity. Even a mild scoliosis can cause premature degeneration of the spine and compromise activities of daily living, and a severe scoliosis can contribute to dysfunction of the heart, lungs and digestive system; and may require surgical intervention. Scoliosis affects boys and, more frequently, girls between the ages of 8 and 18. The cause varies and, sadly, in many cases is unknown. Unfortunately, at this point in time we do not know how to predict which ones will go from mild to severe, so it is always in the best interests of a child with scoliosis to be closely watched until they reach skeletal maturity.
With a rehab program we monitor your child’s spine, beginning with their foot and arch development and checking for proper movement of the pelvic and spinal joints. We also monitor the strength of their spinal musculature and provide therapeutic exercise programs to strengthen weakened muscles, which can be a major contributor to scoliotic changes. One thing is for certain, even if we are unable to completely straighten a scoliotic spine, we can almost always improve strength and function and thereby greatly diminish the chances of needing surgery. The key here (as with all natural healing processes) is don’t wait until surgery is scheduled and then look for a miracle. Come early and get regular check ups, for all of your children, all of the time.
What should you watch for? (these are easy to check for at bath time)
- Does you child have level shoulders, level hips and level ears?
- When he/she bends forward does his/her spine look straight or curved sideways?
- Does their waist look uneven from side to side or does one hip look larger than the other?
- Does one shoulder blade stick out more than the other?
- Does he/she look knock-kneed on one or both knees?
If you have more questions regarding your specific problem call our office at (780) 963-4608 to set up a consultation with Dr. McLeod.
This information represents only a brief summary of the conditions discussed and is presented as a public service by the Immanuel Healing Centre. For this or any other health problems about which you have concerns please consult personally with a health care professional.