5 Things to Know About Scoliosis

5 Things to Know About Scoliosis

Scoliosis is one of the most common spine conditions in teenagers. It occurs when the spine curves abnormally to the right or left. Believe it or not, about 3 million people in the U.S. are diagnosed with scoliosis each year. If you have scoliosis or have a child who has been diagnosed with this condition, here are five things you should know.

1 - Early Detection is Key

Just like with most conditions, the key to treating scoliosis well is early detection. If your child is diagnosed with the condition at a young age, their doctor can design a treatment plan that stops the condition from worsening. Since scoliosis doesn't always cause pain, many children and parents are unaware of the condition. This makes it particularly important for parents to take their children to routine physicals.

2 - The Cause of Scoliosis is Often Unknown

Many parents wonder if there were any steps they could've taken to prevent scoliosis. The truth is that there is no known cause of scoliosis so there's nothing you can do as a parent to reduce your child's risk of it. Rest assured that the heavy backpack they wear to school or poor posture they may have did not cause scoliosis.

3 - Scoliosis Does Not Always Require Treatment

If you find out your child has scoliosis, you may ask their doctor how they'll treat it. Believe it or not, scoliosis is one of the few conditions that doesn't always require treatment. Instead of treatment, their doctor may monitor their condition closely to ensure it doesn't worsen. Only 30 percent of scoliosis cases warrant braces. Surgery is rarely required. If your child needs a brace, they will be able to play sports and enjoy extracurricular activities without any issues.

4 - Surgery for Scoliosis is Often Successful

In the rare case your child undergoes surgery for scoliosis, know that it will likely be successful, especially if they are in good general health and have your support. The surgery will come with a recovery period of a few months so you will have to coordinate with your child's school to design a game plan.

5 - There are Two Types of Scoliosis

The two types of scoliosis include idiopathic scoliosis and degenerative scoliosis. Idiopathic scoliosis is the most common type and is usually hereditary. It usually affects children who are at least 10 years old. Degenerative scoliosis is seen in adults and is the result of the natural process of aging.

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