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Often there is no pain associated with scoliosis and, except in severe cases, it has not been found to lead to more back pain than someone with a ‘normal’ straight spine.

However, it is important for parents to take note of children and adolescents complaining of back pain or leg pain.  Do not dismiss them as growing pains until they have been examined by your G.P., physiotherapist or osteopath.

Some distinguishing features of a scoliosis are:

     1.     Whole body leaning to one side

     2.     Uneven shoulder height

     3.     One hip sticks up higher than the other (Parents often first notice possible scoliosis when they see that one trouser leg is shorter than the other.)

     4.     Uneven rib cage

     5.     Rib protrusion on one side of the spine

About Scoliosis

We all have curves in our spines, but scoliosis causes the spine to curve in the wrong direction. It causes sideways curves, and those are different from the spine's normal curves.

If you were to look at your spine from the side, you'd see that it curves out at your neck (cervical spine), in at your mid-back (thoracic spine), and out again at your low back (lumbar spine). Your back is supposed to have those curves.

However, if you look at your spine from behind, you shouldn't see any curves at all. When there are sideways curves in the spine from this view, that's scoliosis. The curves can look like an 'S' or a 'C.'

Scoliosis is generally associated with children, but adults can have it, too. This typically happens when scoliosis is not detected during childhood or the disease progresses aggressively.

Causes of Scoliosis

About 80% of scoliosis occurs for no known reason and is therefore termed idiopathic. The rest occur due to damage to the spine from Some children are born with scoliosis, or develop soon after birth, due to congenital disorders of growth.  Injury to the nerves or muscles around the spine due to neuromuscular disorders or disease, surgery, degenerative disc disease, osteoporosis or spinal fractures may all cause scoliotic curves to develop.

Rehabilitation & Protecting Your Back

In the long term, good posture is maintained by increasing the muscular stability of the spine. The osteopath will identify muscles that have become over-stretched or shortened, weak or tense and can then teach a range of exercises and techniques that will help to stabilise the back, including improving abdominal, pelvic floor and back strength. For more information please call or ask in the clinic