Summer has arrived and the temperature is warming up! Activities turn from indoors to outside as we begin to enjoy our beautiful Newcastle coastline. This is often the first opportunity parents have had to notice their child’s posture in the last 6 months. As jumpers and jackets give way to singlets and swimmers, a child’s posture and spine alignment are much easier to observe.
During the summer months we typically see an increase in the number of kids presenting with scoliosis or postural complaints. Scoliosis is a term used to describe a progressive sideways curvature of the spine. This association with summer is due to adolescents wearing less clothing. Parents are able to notice some of the key indications that may suggest a scoliosis is forming in their growing adolescent’s spine. There may be differences in the child’s shoulder heights or one hip may appear tilted to one side. A parent may even pick up on a visible curve in the spine or the rib cage appearing twisted.
The most common form of scoliosis is “adolescent idiopathic scoliosis”, which means the cause is unknown, though there is a strong genetic influence that affects the growth of the spine. It will normally present between the ages of 10-15 years and is more common in girls.
If you have noticed any scoliosis indications in your child, they are certainly worth following up. Children tend to spend long periods in slouching postures which can affect the curves of the spine. These new postures then become a “habit” postures that are hard to break. If, on the other hand, a scoliosis is in the early stages of development, an accurate assessment by our experienced chiropractor can help identify what is occurring. In children it is important to identify a scoliosis early. Treatment options work best to improve the curvature while the child is still growing.
One of the best ways to check your child’s posture is to compare the alignment of different body structures. We highly recommend this scoliosis screening ap created by The ScoliCare clinic in Sydney. https://app.scoliscreen.com/
If detected early and treatment is put into place, symptoms can often be avoided. If a diagnosis is missed or poorly managed, scoliosis may require surgical intervention. The best outcomes for children with scoliosis are often observed when early detection and intervention are carried out by experienced practitioners.
If you have noticed changes with your child’s spine or posture, have them assessed. As a chiropractic practice in Newcastle we have a strong interest in adolescent scoliosis. It has been our focus to built a team of specialists around us to ensure we can offer the best treatment options, advice and referral when required.