Is Scoliosis Bracing Right for Your Child?
Scoliosis is characterized by a side-to-side curvature of the spine. Most cases of scoliosis have no known cause, but research has shown that it tends to run in families. In children between the ages of 10 and 18, the most common spinal disorder is adolescent idiopathic scoliosis. Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine that appears during a child’s pubescent growth spurt. It is at this time that the human body grows rapidly, causing the spine to curve in some individuals.
Although we may not always know what causes some spines to curve incorrectly, we know that the disorder is found in millions of people worldwide. Current literature even suggests that scoliosis may affect up to 5% of children. Unfortunately, even with today’s modern technology, there is still just one way to reduce the curve or prevent it from progressing without a surgical procedure: scoliosis bracing.
What is Scoliosis Bracing?
When you choose Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery for your child’s spinal care needs, one of our renowned back doctors will create a personalized treatment plan for your child to get them started on a path to a more comfortable life. This specialized treatment plan may include bracing your child.
A scoliosis brace is a stiff plastic jacket that fits around the torso, from underneath their arms to their hips, similar to a corset. There are many different kinds of braces for scoliosis, but most include straps to help straighten the spine and keep it in place. Bracing is often the first step in pediatric scoliosis treatment, with doctors hoping that it will prevent the curve from getting worse and requiring surgery in the future.
Should You Treat Your Child or Teen’s Scoliosis with Bracing?
Fortunately, few pediatric scoliosis patients require treatment, and only about 30% of patients require bracing. For scoliosis bracing to be effective, a child must still be growing. Before starting any treatment, such as bracing, an orthopedist will examine your child to ensure that they:
- Are not too far along in growth and development
- Don’t have a curve that is too severe
- Don’t have a curve that is too small
If the orthopedic specialist determines that your child will be able to achieve the desired results by bracing, a brace will be specially made for your child’s body type. As the child grows, their brace may need to be adjusted or replaced.
About 10% of scoliosis patients require surgery, and if your child is one of the few that requires a surgical procedure, the sooner it can be performed, the better. Surgeries done earlier tend to be simpler and necessitate less fusion of the spine. Often, recovery from pediatric scoliosis surgery takes about one to two months.
Discover Reliable Treatment for Pediatric Scoliosis with a Florida Spine Doctor
Whether your child has been diagnosed with scoliosis and you are researching treatment options, or if you would like to have your child checked out for scoliosis, give us a call at (855) 853-6542 or complete a contact form to schedule an appointment at one of our Florida clinics. At Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery, we offer minimally invasive treatments for many spinal conditions, including pediatric scoliosis.