Before the age of 10, young children seldom complain of a backache. When they do, it’s usually for a day or so, and then the problem is not mentioned again. Often times, a vertebra can remain out of alignment (subluxated) and the child’s pliable spine adapts to the situation. “As a tree is bent, so shall it grow!” is an old adage that can certainly be applied to the spine. Spinal misalignments in a young spine can develop curvatures which create spinal problems in adult life. A curvature is an abnormal spinal contour. Scoliosis is a type of curvature that has an abnormal side to side bend.

The process of scoliosis development goes as follows:

First, the spine does not develop its normal front to back arches, and this causes unusual weight to be carried on the spinal discs.

Second, the center of certain discs shifts to one side, and the vertebra tip to the other side, just like a teeter totter. This misalignment, called a subluxation, causes the spine to tip to one side. To compensate for this bend, the spine then tips to the other side at another level and the result is scoliosis.

Chiropractic care has often proven to be the most effective means of curvature control and correction.

Dr. Fred H. Barge, in his book “Scoliosis” states, “From the time children are very young, the swingy swing, play pens and walkers, are encouraging children to walk too soon. Exercises in school such as sit-ups, and bending over touching the toes are destructive to the proper development of normal spinal contours. The enforced sitting in school all day also contributes to improper development of normal spinal curves. All of these things can lead to the development of curvatures and scoliosis. If the problem is detected early in a young child, it can often be straightened. Regular chiropractic examination, especially after a severe fall or sports activity, can detect spinal subluxations. Chiropractic spinal adjustment can correct these misalignments and return the spine to its proper position.”

There certainly can be other causes of curvature. Hereditary development, a short leg, pelvic (hip) distortions, certain diseases, all can contribute to curvature development; but early detection and chiropractic care may prevent further curvature. Surgery and bracing are rarely sometimes necessary, but control and reduction through chiropractic care should be a primary consideration in all cases of scoliosis.