Scoliosis often begins in childhood and continues throughout life. This condition causes curvature of your spine. The curve might be so mild that your condition is not diagnosed until the curvature gets worse later in life. You can also develop this condition as an adult due to spine degeneration. If your doctor has diagnosed you with scoliosis, you're probably wondering what type of treatments you'll need. Here are some possible options for scoliosis treatments as an adult.
Braces For Temporary Pain Relief
A curvature in the spine can cause back pain. If you're having episodes of intense pain, your doctor might recommend wearing a brace for short periods to support your back. Braces are used to correct spinal curvatures in children since their spines are still growing. However, a brace won't help the curvature of an adult spine, and it could make your back muscles weak, so don't wear a brace longer than your doctor recommends.
Medications To Help With Pain
You might need to take over-the-counter pain medications regularly to help control your pain. In addition, your doctor might give you injections in your back to relieve pain for the short term. Pain is one of the more challenging parts of living with scoliosis. Since your spine curvature will probably get worse over time and not better, you may need help from a pain clinic for ways to deal with your pain.
Your scoliosis doctor can advise you on lifestyle changes that could help with your pain. For instance, wearing supportive shoes could help your back and hips to have better alignment and reduce hip and leg pain. You might also need to lose weight, avoid certain sports, avoid heavy lifting, and avoid activities that put pressure on your spine.
Several types of physical therapies have been devised over the years to help with spinal curvature and pain. Some of these are intended for children with spines still growing and changing. Others, like basic physical therapy, might help you as an adult by making your core muscle stronger so your spine has more support.
However, you need to work with a physical therapist so you do the right exercises and don't make your misaligned back even worse by doing the wrong exercises.
Monitoring your condition is an important part of adult scoliosis care. By knowing how fast your condition is progressing, your doctor can choose the most appropriate treatments. The only treatment you may need is physical therapy if your condition is mild. If you start to have severe back, hip, or leg pain, your doctor might recommend surgery.
Surgery for scoliosis might involve decompressing the spine to relieve pressure on a nerve, fusing bones to strengthen and support the spine, and removing some bone to realign your spine.