Alternative scoliosis treatment can include physical therapy exercises, yoga, and chiropractic. These types of treatments are regarded as alternative because they fall outside of the traditional orthopedic practices of observation, bracing, and surgery. As a whole, alternative scoliosis treatment has not been researched as much as bracing and surgery; however, anecdotal reports and case studies suggest that further research into these methods is warranted.
Physical therapy exercises, in general, are not regarded as effective in the treatment of scoliosis. However, scoliosis-specific exercises (sometimes called SSE’s) have been gathering increasing evidence. Most of these SSE techniques arose in Europe, and are now beginning to find their way over to the United States, Asia, Australia, and elsewhere.
Yoga is an alternative scoliosis treatment that can be very helpful if it is done properly; however, some yoga maneuvers can be harmful for certain scoliosis curve types and patterns. It is very important that your yoga instructor has experience with scoliosis and understands your specific case. For the best source of information on yoga as an alternative scoliosis treatment, we recommend visiting Elise Miller’s website, www.YogaForScoliosis.com.
Traditional chiropractic has had mixed results in scoliosis, with little benefit found to the practices employed by most chiropractors, even in mild cases. However, more advanced and scoliosis-specific techniques could be more effective in treating scoliosis, just like scoliosis-specific exercises are more effective than general physical therapy. CLEAR does not recommend traditional chiropractic for the treatment of moderate, severe, or high-risk cases. We have provided a list of questions for you to ask your chiropractor to help you determine if they are qualified to manage cases of scoliosis.