Many doctors diagnose scoliosis in children and teenagers, but it can also develop during adulthood. While some cases remain stable after bone maturation, the curvature can progress for others over time. Manage scoliosis more effectively by learning what causes scoliosis to get worse in adults.
Lack of Early Intervention
If scoliosis was present in childhood but not diagnosed or treated, it may worsen in adulthood. Regular screenings in adolescence make timely intervention possible. Doctors may suggest observation, physical therapy, bracing, or surgery to manage scoliosis.
If you are an adult recently diagnosed with scoliosis, your doctor will still recommend ways to manage the condition. Follow their advice to alleviate symptoms, improve spinal alignment, and prevent or slow curvature progression.
Natural Age-Related Changes
Aging is another factor that causes scoliosis to get worse in adults. As our bodies age, the spine undergoes natural degenerative changes that can exacerbate scoliosis.
The spinal discs between vertebrae cushion the vertebra, allowing the spine to twist and bend. Natural aging processes can cause the discs to lose moisture and shrink, contributing to spinal asymmetry.
Arthritis and other age-related changes can also increase spinal curvature. Aging adults should adopt a lifestyle with regular exercise and a balanced diet to support their spinal health.
Muscle Weakness and Imbalance
The deep back and abdominal muscles work to stabilize and align the spine. Muscle weaknesses and imbalances can contribute to scoliosis progression.
The abnormal curvature that characterizes scoliosis can place uneven stress on muscle groups, creating an imbalance. Not strengthening the underused muscles can further contribute to their weakening, so they can’t adequately support the spine.
Targeted exercises and physical therapy, such as the Schroth Method, address muscle weakness and imbalance. Use tailored exercises to slow the progression and reduce scoliosis-related discomfort.
As with any aspect of health, lifestyle can affect scoliosis. Prolonged sitting, standing with poor posture, and heavy lifting can strain the back.
While exercise is necessary for health and well-being, doctors generally recommend that people with scoliosis avoid exercises that overuse one side of the body or involve repetitive hyperextension. These exercises strain the back and worsen asymmetrical posture.
Take proactive steps and seek medical guidance to enhance your spinal health. Improve strength with a stall ladder for physiotherapeutic scoliosis-specific exercises (PSSE) like the Schroth Method. Shop with Beyond Balance today for a stall ladder and accessories like extension poles and benches.