Scoliosis is the unnatural curvature or abnormal spine rotation. The severity of the disease can vary significantly from mild to completely crippling. Scoliosis often becomes the cause of many other health conditions as well. It can also hinder the proper functioning of vital organs such as the heart.
Scoliosis can be a difficult diagnosis for you and your child. Learning about the different treatment options available to your child can better equip you to make informed decisions regarding your child’s care.
In addition to surgical options, there are now many physiotherapies and bracing options. Early diagnosis and treatment can mean a world of difference when it comes to scoliosis.
What Is the Schroth Therapy?
Schroth therapy is a non-invasive, non-surgical treatment option for scoliosis. It is more than 100 years old and consists of custom-tailored exercises to reverse and manage the condition. The therapy aims to help lengthen and alleviate the spine in a three-dimensional approach.
Here are the main goals of Schroth therapy:
Schroth therapy works by rhythmically aligning breathing, sensory skills, and limb coordination. It does so by increasing awareness of one’s movement and posture. All to supplement supporting the spine in ways that alleviate its unusual curvature and rotating.
The technique works particularly well for patients still in the growing age suffering from mild to moderate scoliosis. Slowing down the further regression of the deformity can go a long way toward reducing more severe complications later in life. It can also ensure a relatively pain-free and everyday life for them.
Schroth Therapy for Children
Adolescence, the time when most cases of pediatric scoliosis are diagnosed, is also a phase full of growth spurts and changes for your child. Schroth therapy aims to reduce the abnormal spinal curve during this time.
The pediatric version of Schroth therapy often incorporates bracing and breathing and physiotherapy exercises. Each child is different, and so is the treatment route best suited to their needs. Schroth therapy offers customised treatment plans for each child.
After examination, a specially trained orthodontist will determine the need for bracing with orthosis explicitly designed to help children with the condition.
The age of your child, bone maturity and progression of the spinal rotation will all play a part in deciding treatment options. Schroth therapy in children aims to simultaneously slow the speed of abnormal spinal curvature while working to reverse and elongate it.
How Effective Is Adolescent Schroth Therapy
Many surgical and non-surgical methods of treating scoliosis in children have been developed and perfected in recent years as awareness of the malformation grew. This study finds Schroth therapy particularly effective in these areas when it comes to adolescent treatment:
1. Cobb angle
The standard used for measuring the extent of scoliosis’s effects on the spinal curvature. The study finds that Schroth therapy made improvements in decreasing the Cobb angle without surgical intervention
2. Quality of Life
Schroth Therapy helps improve the overall quality of life for younger scoliosis patients. Reduction of the Cobb angle results in a better self-image and less consciousness concerning scoliosis. The benefits of the therapy aren’t limited to phycological betterment alone.
The therapy also helps manage pain through non-invasive treatment. Enabling your child to participate in regular childhood activities such as sports and play. Schroth therapy also effectively settles other health issues caused by scolioses, such as breathing issues and chronic fatigue.
3. Reducing the Need for Surgery
All surgery carry significant risks. More so when it’s the delicate matter of pediatric spinal surgery. Schroth therapy helps children diagnosed with scoliosis by reducing the need for surgical correction. This form of therapy helps your child make behavioural modifications and correct habits that could worsen the spinal deformity, in addition to exercise and bracing.
Tips to Increase Schroth Therapy’s Effectiveness for Your Child
Schroth therapy sessions can seem lengthy and physically demanding. It can be hard to convince an active pre-teen to regularly attend sessions when so many other interests take up their time and attention.
Your child may not always be eager to head to therapy, especially in the initial days when soreness and discomfort are normal. Here are some tips to help enlist your child’s compliance during therapy and at-home exercises.
1. Incentivise Them
Offering incentives to help motivate your child is always a good idea. But it doesn't always have to come in the form of their favourite treat or game show. Help your child understand all the fun activities they will be able to do once their scoliosis improves.
Plan outings and games. Read success stories together of other children who overcame scoliosis and went on to lead active, healthy lives.
2. Schedule a Routine
When you pre-schedule therapy sessions and exercise time at home, it becomes second nature. Take the time to set your child’s calendar and encourage them to adhere to it. Regular practice of breathing techniques and exercise can make Schroth therapy more effective.
3. Lend Support and Encouragement
It’s normal to feel sore and achy during and after therapy sessions as the body adjusts to changes and new habits. Make sure you and your child’s physiotherapy specialist take things at a pace your child is comfortable with. Offer constant encouragement and help them understand how therapy can improve and manage their condition.
4. Record Their Journey
Another great way to encourage your child is to document and show them just how far they have come. Record them performing their exercises and breathing. Show them the improvements in their appearance and be their biggest cheerleader. These recordings can even come in handy to practise the exercises at home.
Your child can lead a very active and fulfilling life even with a scoliosis diagnosis. Help your child overcome scoliosis and avoid its complications in later life. The earlier your child is diagnosed, the sooner treatment can begin.
To learn about more treatment options, Book an appointment today and help your child manage their condition.
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