Scoliosis Specialist in Chicago, IL
Looking for scoliosis treatment in Chicago?
Align Joint & Spine is a leading practitioner in physical therapy and chiropractic care that can help diagnose, treat and provide ongoing care and advice for patients suffering with the effects of scoliosis.
At Align Joint & Spine, you’ll find treatment for scoliosis Chicago residents have turned to for years. Find out everything you need to know about scoliosis from our resident physical therapist, Dr. Daniel Jacobazzi.
Scoliosis Chicago Questions And Answers
By Daniel Jacobazzi, D.C., P.T.
Our in-house licensed doctor, Daniel Jacobazzi, answers any questions you might have regarding scoliosis, including details about the condition, its effects, treatment and more – everything you need to know about scoliosis in one place.
What Exactly Is Scoliosis?
Scoliosis is a term used by medical professionals to describe excessive curvature of the spine. Normally, the upper part of the spine is slightly rounded while the lower spine should sway inwards: in a patient with scoliosis, however, you will see that the curve is exaggerated sideways into an “S’ or “C” shape. Scoliosis technically occurs if the curve of the spine is over ten degrees from the norm. The condition generally appears somewhere between the age of ten and early teens, however adults may also develop the condition. Physical therapy and chiropractic treatment is advised for the treatment of scoliosis, as it is beneficial in correcting posture, improving stretch, and strengthening the muscles of the spine.
What Is The Cause Of Scoliosis?
Although scientists don’t precisely know the cause of scoliosis, the odds are high that scoliosis has a genetic component, as it often runs in families. People with a pre-existing family history are more likely to develop scoliosis than those with no family history. Although nobody knows why, females have a greater likelihood of being affected than males. In most cases, scoliosis seems to appear without an obvious reason, regardless of having bad posture or a poor diet, as it sometimes assumed. However, congenital abnormalities, underlying neurological and muscular disorders, infections, and fractures of the spine are sometimes contributing factors.
Later in life, patients may be diagnosed with scoliosis as a result of deterioration of the spine through ageing, and women in particular are at risk of developing scoliosis if they have osteoporosis.
Facts About Scoliosis
Let’s take a look at the facts about scoliosis.
– 2% to 4% of all children develop some type of scoliosis
– Scoliosis is usually diagnosed in children aged 10+ and young teens
– Research has shown that as many as 40% of all adults between the ages of 50 and 80 who experience pain in their lower back have a form of scoliosis
– Early detection is vital – the optimal result for treatment of scoliosis occurs if it can be detected early then treated correctly
– You can take an online scoliosis screening test to make sure you get the right treatment fast
Living with Scoliosis
Patients who are diagnosed with scoliosis in childhood should not experience too much disruption to their lives. Children and teenagers living with scoliosis are encouraged to exercise and take part in sports activities as this helps to strengthen the spine and back muscles, which can help. However, as the patient reaches full growth, the spine curvature can increase and this can lead to more serious problems.
What Are the Long Term Effects of Scoliosis?
Millions of people worldwide are dealing with scoliosis. Over time, its effects become more serious and can pose potentially life-threatening problems for the patient. As scoliosis is normally diagnosed in children whose bodies have not yet finished growing, the spinal curvature can grow along with the body. If the patient has not received treatment by the time they reach adulthood, there can be serious consequences.
The effects of untreated scoliosis are:
Scoliosis can lead to varying degrees of pain, both intermittent and constant, across many areas of the body. Most commonly this pain occurs in the lower back, neck, shoulders, hips, legs and buttocks, as these areas are put under pressure when the spine is unable to take the patient’s weight.
Problems with Balance
As scoliosis is a degenerative disease, the problems get progressively worse as the patient gets older. A worsening curve can compress nerves in the legs, which can lead to severe issues with balance, which can affect mobility and even functionality. In severe cases, the patient may end up unable to walk and may need to use a wheelchair.
If the curve of the spine progresses to such an extent that it reaches around 70 degrees, the patient is likely to suffer with physical deformities as the body gradually contorts. This can cause a wide range of mobility and functionality issues, and give the patient a stooped appearance.
At its worst, Scoliosis can cause the patient to have difficulty breathing. Increased curvature of the spine puts pressure on the internal organs, the most serious of which can be the lungs. Pressure on the lungs can make it hard for the patient to draw full breath.
Fatigue is also a possible consequence of long term untreated scoliosis. Scoliosis can make it difficult to stand or move around for long periods of time as the back muscles have to work extra hard. In more serious cases, fatigue can also occur as a result of lung compression, which means the patient struggles to take in enough oxygen.
Loss of Appetite
Extreme cases of scoliosis can lead to the stomach being compressed by the spine’s curvature. This can lead the patient to feel early satiety, and feel full before they have eaten enough. This symptom is more likely to occur in elderly patients who have not had scoliosis treatment before the stopped growing.
How Can Scoliosis Be Treated?
Scoliosis is a very serious condition, and can lead to a lot of unpleasant problems if left untreated. However, these days there are specialist treatments available to help with the onset of scoliosis. There are several things a patient can do to reduce and ease the effects of scoliosis, especially if it is treated early on.
It is highly advisable that patients seek professional help and advice when looking to treat scoliosis. The best forms of scoliosis treatment are physical therapy and chiropractic care, along with bracing directed toward postural correction. Physical therapy can help to strengthen the muscles of the back through exercise. Chiropractors and physical therapists are able to help patients to improve their body mechanics and posture to prevent worsening of the curvature. Many patients require a brace to help fix the spine curvature. In the most serious cases, surgically inserted rods can help straighten out the spine.
If treatment, especially the use of brace, is begun early, it can help the spine grow in a more normal fashion, and many scoliosis sufferers will go on to live an undisrupted, normal life.
Physical Therapy for Scoliosis
Physical therapy is among the most popular non-surgical treatments for scoliosis. It helps reduce the pain from scoliosis, as well as increasing mobility and improving functionality of the affected areas. Physical therapy helps retrain the brain to communicate with the muscles responsible for maintaining a straight spine.
With over 20 years of experience in the field, Dr Jacobazzi is an expert in helping scoliosis patients with physical therapy. This may include:
– Practicing postures that reduce scoliosis, both in dedicated sessions and in daily activities
– Focusing on breathing and addressing any sleep issues the patient may have as a result of scoliosis
– Practicing mirror image exercises the curved spine return to balance
– Practicing involuntary exercises to help develop new neurological pathways (i.e. retraining the brain) for redistributing the body’s gravity
Scoliosis Specialist Chicago – Chiropractic Care for Scoliosis
Alongside physical therapy, chiropractic care for scoliosis is a widely successful form of treatment for scoliosis. Chiropractic care focuses mainly on issues with the spine, and uses therapy and treatment designed specifically to help ease back pain and adjust positions of joints in connection with the spine. Chiropractic care is a popular scoliosis treatment, as it is generally without discomfort, and requires no drugs or invasive surgery.
Dr. Jacobazzi is a qualified chiropractor, passionate about delivering hands-on, drug-free care for patients with scoliosis. If you’re living in Illinois and you or a loved one is living with scoliosis, for the best chiropractic care for scoliosis Chicago has to offer, contact the Align Joint and Spine clinic today.
Bracing for Scoliosis
Bracing is a great option for scoliosis sufferers as it is inexpensive and non-invasive. For patients wanting to avoid surgery, bracing is the easiest and most popular way to receive ongoing treatment.
For patients needing a brace, look no further than Align Joint & Spine: our resident doctor, Daniel Jacobazzi, is a scoliosis specialist Chicago can be proud of.
Dr. Jacobazzi uses the innovative new ScoliBrace™ – a cutting edge form of scoliosis brace, and is the sole certified provider of ScoliBraces in llinois. If you’re a Chicago resident suffering with scoliosis, come and see what we can do for you.
What is the ScoliBrace™ ?
The ScoliBrace™ has been designed and constructed using cutting-edge technology. It is a market-leading provider of braces for people with scoliosis, producing the best bracing results in the straightening of scoliosis curvatures. Its approach adopts 3D scans of the patient’s body together with specialized x-rays. This technology works with a computer aided design (CAD) program which results in a custom brace, created to enable the optimal possible correction for each individual case. Each case of scoliosis is different: each patient has a different degree of curvature, and will require custom bracing to start the correction process. The ScoliBrace™ offers greater comfort for the wearer and is not as noticeable as many other types of brace. Even those patients who have been offered only surgical options can often achieve considerable improvements after using the ScoliBrace™ bracing system, which is much less invasive and disruptive to life.
The ScoliBrace™ is a fantastic modern option for scoliosis sufferers, both children and adults. Its discreet and non-invasive approach to treating scoliosis begins to work after just 4 months, and is effective after a year or less in fixing the spine curvature. For more information on how ScoliBrace™ can help treat scoliosis patients, visit our ScoliCare / ScoliBrace™ page.
Other Tips for Reducing Scoliosis Effects
As well as undergoing professional treatment, there are several everyday things that scoliosis sufferers can do to reduce symptoms and speed up the effects of physical therapy, chiropractic care and bracing.
Maintaining a nutritious diet is a vital part of a healthy life, but it is especially important for children with early indicators of scoliosis. Nutrition deficiencies is an important factor that can lead to scoliosis. Patients undergoing treatment should also ensure they eat healthily and take supplements. A good diet for scoliosis includes:
– Grass fed beef
– Oily fish like salmon
– Nuts & seeds
– Fresh fruit & vegetables
– Unrefined carbohydrates like sweet potato
– Healthy oils like coconut & olive oil
Another thing you can do help progress your scoliosis treatment is by altering the position in which you sleep slightly. If you sleep on your side, it’s a good idea to put a pillow between your knees as this helps open up the ribcage and distributes weight along the spine more evenly. If you sleep on your back, this is a great position for helping with scoliosis. Choose a high quality, supportive mattress and pillows to alleviate unnecessary stress on the spine.
Combined with expert care from Dr. Jacobazzi, (the scoliosis specialist Chicago community members return to again and again), patients with all degrees of scoliosis can be sure to live a healthy and active life once their treatment is complete.
What Is the Future of Scoliosis Treatment?
These days there are more and more innovations in scoliosis treatment developing all the time, with the aim of providing effective care for patients, without disrupting their lives or the need for surgery.
Ultimately, there may well be a cure for scoliosis on the horizon in the form of genetic testing for scoliosis. It is not yet known the precise cause of scoliosis, but there are genetic indicators that can be tested to see how likely it is that a patient may develop scoliosis later in life. The earlier the condition is identified, the sooner the treatment can begin and the less the scoliosis will impact the patient’s life.