Scoliosis treatments can come in many forms of bracing, surgery, medication, and much more. The type of treatment you get from the dozens of scoliosis treatments available for your choice largely depends on the severity of your case, the severity of the curvature of your spine, and the maturity of your skeletal system. This determines the spine’s potential for further growth and whether the curvature will progress.
Bracing as a scoliosis treatment
Bracing is one of the more common scoliosis treatment methods available for you. This is for people whose bones are still continually growing, such as children or teenagers. Usually, bracing does not cure scoliosis itself but can prevent the further progression or curving of the spine.
The brace that medical specialists commonly use is one made out of plastic. This treatment is ideal for other scoliosis treatments as it can be hidden discreetly under clothes and fits snugly under your arms and around the rib cage, as well as in the lower back and hips. Bear in mind that scoliosis treatments like braces should be worn day and night to prevent further progression of the condition and is a necessary way to treat scoliosis.
Wearing braces can effectively reduce the restrictions previously placed on you for simply having scoliosis. You can now perform everyday tasks with ease, but you must still avoid physically strenuous activity that puts stress on your spine as much as you can.
Another effective method to treat the condition is a prescription medication for scoliosis, specifically painkillers. This is an ideal treatment, especially when scoliosis is accompanied by back pain and the degree of curvature in the spine is causing stress in the joints, bones, muscles, and soft tissues in your spine. Medications for scoliosis that are prescribed may include but are not limited to ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and naproxen sodium. However, be reminded that these medications are only prescribed to relieve back pain and if there is ever inflammation, reduce it. Medications for scoliosis do not serve as a method for treating scoliosis itself, unlike the scoliosis treatments mentioned before.
Scoliosis surgery can also be a viable treatment for many scoliosis cases. However, this method of treating scoliosis is usually reserved for severe cases. The doctor prescribes surgical procedures to reduce the severity of your spinal cord curve and prevent it from getting worse.
Spinal fusion is the most commonly used procedure among most surgical ways to treat scoliosis. Spinal fusion is done by connecting two or more bones in your vertebrae in order to reduce movement. Materials that are as close to imitating bone as they possibly can are inserted between the vertebrae to hamper its movement, further curving. Part of the spine is then held straight by hooks, wires, metal rods, and screws while the bones in your vertebra fuse together.
Scoliosis surgery is undoubtedly one of the most effective methods to treat scoliosis that is available, but it is not without its complications. The complications involved in spinal cord surgery can include bleeding, infection, and rarely pain or nerve damage. There are also rare instances where the bones fail to fuse and heal together and might require another surgery.
Aftercare steps after scoliosis surgery
Most often, after scoliosis surgery, you will not be discharged just yet as doctors will keep a close eye on you and monitor your condition. However, after your condition has improved significantly and you can stand up and walk, you will then be discharged, and you will come back soon after to have your stitches removed. Here are some aftercare tips you can do in your own home to ensure that your surgical wounds heal properly over time and a guideline on how to treat scoliosis.
- Taking care of your wounds – do not take a shower just yet, patients are only allowed to take a shower within a week after surgery. For the first week after surgery, you will still have to cover your incision wounds with something, preferably plastic medical tape, to avoid them getting wet. Then a week after that, you can shower and clean your wounds.
- Breathing exercises – practice breathing exercises to restore the original function of your lungs to the way it was surgery. Do little breathing exercises first not to agitate and open your wounds, then gradually increase your exercises as your wounds begin to heal.
- Exercises and Stretching – In the first week following your surgery, you will be advised to get as much bed rest as you possibly can, but after that, it is safe to take a few steps and walks around the house to exercise your body.