Back to School, Richard III, and Chiropractic
by Dr. Jenny Talbert
Going back to school always brings back some very fond memories of buying school supplies, getting new sneakers, and wondering about my new teachers.
I also have some memories of the health screenings they used to do for us at the beginning of the school year. Included in this was a mandatory scoliosis screening requiring all 6th graders to line up and bend forward to have the school nurse observe any potential rib hump on one side of the spine.
Most of the time when people hear the word "scoliosis" they think of some dramatic curvature of the spine causing a hunched back and a twisted spine. Even Shakespeare noted one famous example in Richard III, calling this British monarch a "hunchback'd toad." Science has now proven that he was not a hunch back but just had severe scoliosis.
Scoliosis is a a sideways curve of the spine that develops during childhood. If you were looking at someone with scoliosis from behind, their spine would have "C" or "S" shape instead of a vertical line.
As school is back in session, it is as important as ever to have your child's spine checked for scoliosis. Many states mandate scoliosis screening, but Maine does not require these screenings. This being said, we find in our office that early detection is key to helping the spine function optimally as long as possible.
Chiropractors are experts in detecting and treating scoliosis.
Even though there is no single treatment method alone that has been shown to correct scoliosis, studies indicate that early intervention with conservative care has the potential to stop or reverse the curvature, thereby reducing the need for more invasive or undesirable interventions later on.
The most successful cases of scoliosis management used a multi-modal approach, combining chiropractic adjustments with self-care exercises, bracing and other methods of rehabilitation.
Chiropractors can help with curve reductions, pain management and overall improved functioning in a spine with scoliosis regardless of age. Our clinic treats many children on a daily basis and would love to have all kids checked for scoliosis or other postural problems like text-neck syndrome. This is a newer type of neck issue related to overuse of smart phones and other handheld devices.
Have you been screened for scoliosis?
Complimentary scoliosis screenings are available to local schools, churches, and other community organizations. Contact me so that we can organize a screening.