Scoliosis and the Benefits of Massage Therapy

Scoliosis is an abnormal curving of the spine which causes back pain and discomfort. There is no cure for the condition, however massage therapy benefits patients by helping to decrease pain and occurrence of muscle spasms.

Some of the symptoms include legs that are uneven, arthritis, muscles spasms,headaches, pain in ribs, dizziness, nerve compressionsciatica or tmj (or grinding of teeth).

With regular massage sessions, using specialized back massage techniques, the muscles along the spine begin to relax, the tension and tightness begin to decrease and the blood can flow more easily throughout the body.

What the massage will be like

Head massage techniques will most often be where the therapist begins because the distortion in the bones of the cranium is what causes the twisting and bending of the spine, pelvis and ribs. Back massage techniques will follow.

By gently moving the bones in different directions from head to sacrum, a massage therapist can gently loosen the tensions by stretching the connective tissue.

When the bones along the spine are able to move easily, the therapist can then work on further release of the connective tissue within the spine.

Make sure your massage practitioner has experience in CranioSacral Therapy and/or NeuroMuscular Massage, and back massage specifically working with scoliosis patients.

In addition to the relaxation of the muscles, the patient will feel a reduction of stress, allowing the mind to rest and the body to heal as much as it possibly can.

With this condition, the positional movement of the cranial bones causes the spine to become distorted and bent.

Then, the pelvis becomes twisted and the ribs move from their normal positions.

This book, Condition-Specific Massage Therapy  teaches how to massage clients with this condition, as well as many other painful medical conditions. It discusses safety precautions and treatment goals for musculoskeletal conditions.

By moving the bones and muscles, this also loosens the connective tissue that surrounds the spinal cord.

Once these bones and muscles are released and are able to move freely, the connective tissue inside the spine can be stretched and released with back massage techniques, allowing relief of pain for the patient.

Although massage could never be a cure, it can help relieve some pain for the patient.

Other Resources

This website provides helpful information about exercises that help the pain:

Go back to Massage Education Guide Homepage 

Go back to Pain Syndromes from Scoliosis 

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