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How to treat Kyphosis

It is first important to understand what kyphosis is.


What is kyphosis?

 

 

Kyphosis is first a natural curve of your back. Spines have two kinds of curves. The inward curves are located in your mid-back (thorax) and your pelvis: they are the two natural kyphotic curves. The outward curves are in the neck (cervical spine) and low back (lumbar spine): they are the two lordotic curves.

 

If a kyphotic curve (usually the thoracic one) grows larger than 40%, then doctors consider kyphosis as a condition to be treated (often called hyperkyphosis or hyperkyphotic posture).

 

This excessive curvature is usually recognisable thanks to the rounded back appearance it causes. It can also provoke back pain, fatigue, stiffness in the spine and even chest pain or difficulty breathing in the most severe cases, according to SpineUniverse.

 

 

Schema of the posture and spine with and without kyphosis

Source: Ask the trainer

 

 

What causes kyphosis?

 

 

There are two kinds of kyphosis.

 

The first one is caused by a bad posture (sitting all day in an office for example). It can affect patients of all ages though the risk grows with age or a lack of exercise. The

 

The second one is due to a structural disorder of the spine that can originate from damages to the spine (fracture, arthritis, tumors, etc.) or from other conditions. Some teenagers can develop Scheuermann’s disease, which is when the front of the spine grows slowly compared to its back. It causes structural kyphosis as well. Very rarely, people have kyphosis since birth (congenital kyphosis). It is due to problems in the formation or segmentation of the spine.

 

 

Can you fix kyphosis?

 

 

 

Hyperkyphosis must first be diagnosed by your doctor that will use x-rays to define the angle and the causes of the posture.

 

Kyphosis can be fixed but the methods employed depend on the cause of the age of the patient and the type and severity of the posture.

 

To relieve the pain, you can use over-the-counter painkillers.

 

In case of congenital kyphosis or if your condition is really severe, you will probably need surgery. The surgeon straightens your spine in order to fuse it (join together the vertebrae causing the condition). The surgeon uses bone grafts.

After the operation, you will have to stay in hospital for a week, rest for at least a months and wear braces to support your support for up to nine months according to the NHS.

 

Braces are also used to children developing hyperkyphosis to support their spine until it finished growing.

 

Close-up on a back wearing a brace, and a hand holding it

Source: Laser Spine Institute

 

 

Kyphosis correction involves most of the time visiting a physiotherapist who can help you strengthen muscles in your back. Your physiotherapist will also teach you exercises for kyphosis.

 

 

 

Here are some thoracic kyphosis exercises.

 

 

 

Source: Muscle&Motion

 

 

Source: Upright Health

 

 

Chiropractic treatment for kyphosis

 

 

 

If you notice you have a hunchback or if you experience pain, you can find a chiropractor in London who can diagnose hyperkyphotic posture.

 

Chiropractic is especially useful for postural kyphosis as the practitioner teaches you better posture. He can also improve joint motion by adjusting the spine, reduce the pain relieve your muscles.

 

 

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Julia from Findoc
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