15 Things People With Scoliosis Want You To Understand

Scoliosis – a condition where a person’s spine is abnormally curved – is commonplace, but not a lot of people really know what it is and how to deal with it. For the most part, scoliosis is not considered as a serious handicap or disability, but the truth is that moderate to severe scoliosis can be severely painful and exhausting.


Here are the fifteen things that you need to know in order to understand more about people with scoliosis:

Adventurous Side No More

Since most adventurous activities such as hiking up and down the hill and canoeing through rivers require a huge amount of muscle work and energy, people with scoliosis usually avoid it because it can trigger the pain on their curved spine. Same goes to a softball or tennis game.

Complicated Shopping Process

Because people with scoliosis may have one shoulder and one hip to be higher than another, it is very complicated for them to be able to find clothes that fit them nicely. That is why most of them only wear bulky covering winter clothes, because their physical deformities may be made obvious with those revealing summer clothes. Therefore, never ever force them to go to the beach with a bikini on.

Daily Changes

In the better days, the pains are almost non-existent but in the other day’s people with scoliosis may have to pull off the road until the spasms subside. As the condition changes each day, do not think that people with scoliosis are faking their way out of meetings just because they were perfectly fine the day before.

Difficulty in Doing Desk Work

Slouching may be the most convenient position for people with scoliosis to work in a desk. They cannot help to slouch because the curve of their spine does not let them to sit in a normal position, and even those fancy ergonomic chairs available in the majority of offices cannot do much. Standing desk, however, can fit people with scoliosis more. However, standing for too long can also cause pain in people with scoliosis, so to conclude: desk work is difficult for people with scoliosis.

Effects To Their Self Esteem

People with scoliosis have been commented on from a very young age. Most of them have been told to sit or stand up straight and avoid hunching in elementary school, but it is a condition that they cannot really avoid. They might as well have been bullied for this, so avoid making comments about their standing or sitting posture because if they can stand straight up, they definitely would.

Explanation Upon Inquiry

You do not have to be afraid to ask people with scoliosis about their condition. On the contrary, it makes them feel confident about themselves, and you will be perceived as a caring and understanding person for trying to see their opinions about it.

Limited Options Available

People with scoliosis only have limited options to be able to handle their permanent condition. If it is detected at a young age, a back brace may be worn to prevent further curving of the spine. However, only medications and surgery are available for adults who want to treat their scoliosis. Most people goes with the medications, however prevention is better than cure so usually they just avoid heavy physical activities which may cause pain to their spine.

Mental Breakdown

A very bad day in a person with scoliosis’ life can be really severe. Aside from suffering serious amount of pain, people with scoliosis can also suffer from mental breakdown which is caused by their frustration and anger towards the spine’s permanent condition. When they do have a bad day, you may need to be empathetic and stay away, but when they do need you it will be very appreciated if you come to them and help out.

Possible Heart Problem Cause

Even though it is quite rarely found, but scoliosis can be closely linked to abnormal heart movement mechanisms such as the mitral valve prolapse and other heart valve abnormality. The causal link has not been clearly established, but conditions such as the spine impinging on the heart’s atrium may cause this abnormality to occur.

Real Disability

People who have scoliosis usually have been suffering from them since young, but scoliosis tends to get worse with age. It is not something that a person can just eliminate by sleeping, and it may impact them significantly. Scoliosis can also be very painful especially when a person is too tired so throw your judgmental thoughts away and give them your helping hand instead.

Running Out of Breath

As scoliosis causes the hips to be higher than the other, a shoulder blade to protrude more than the other or even the legs to be longer than the other, people suffering from it may sometimes experience difficulty in breathing even after a short walk due to the ribs pushing on the lungs. It is not them getting out of shape, it is their ribs that are abnormally shaped.

Serious Amount of Pain

When people with scoliosis continuously complain about their back pain, it may be the case that the pain so severe that they cannot handle it any longer. The least you can do is to be sympathetic about their condition and offering to help. Anything, from getting a drink, offering them to sit down or getting their medication can be very helpful and they will be forever thankful for knowing someone like you.

Socialization Barrier

Since scoliosis may be unexpectedly painful in some days, it is hard for people suffering from it to make plans ahead of time, and when they actually do they may cancel it at the very last minute. So do not take it personally when people with scoliosis cancel their plan with you, because they do not have any other option rather than staying at home and slouching on their chairs to ease the pain away.

Unlikely Visit To The Beach or Swimming Pool

Even though swimming is a good exercise for them, most people with scoliosis are not comfortable in showing off their bodies in a revealing clothing piece. It hinders them from going to the beach or swimming pool because bathing and swimming suits are mostly very tight and skin-revealing.

Worsening Without Any Clear Cause

As research funds for scoliosis is pretty low, sometimes people with scoliosis cannot provide answers to each and every question that they have. The questions such why in some days the pain is unbearable and in some days it is very minimum are up until now not answerable. Even though scoliosis is known to be worsen by age, however it can be triggered by other conditions as well such as fatigue and tiredness where a person may suffer from scoliosis spasm even when they are asleep.


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