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BodyInversion Tables

Can Inversion Tables Alleviate Scoliosis Symptoms? An Expert Guide

If you’re dealing with scoliosis, you’ve probably heard about inversion tables. They’ve been around for ages, sparking curiosity on whether hanging upside down can actually do your spine any good. It’s not just about trying a cool, new workout trend; it’s about finding relief.

Inversion tables work by flipping the script on gravity to ease the pressure off your spine. But when it comes to scoliosis, can they really make a difference?

Adult Scoliosis and Inversion Therapy

When you hit skeletal maturity, your body’s ability to adjust and correct structural abnormalities, like scoliosis, naturally decreases. This doesn’t mean you’re out of options if you’ve been diagnosed with adult scoliosis. In fact, inversion therapy is a method you might consider. It involves lying on an inversion table that tilts you upside down or at an inverted angle, using gravity to alleviate some of the pressures on your spine.

This relief isn’t just about easing back pain for adults, especially those with degenerative scoliosis or de novo scoliosis. It’s about reducing further curvature progression and addressing issues stemming from a compressed spine or depleted discs. By creating more space between your vertebrae, inversion therapy improves spinal alignment and lessens compressive force on your intervertebral discs.

Inversion tables aren’t just about spinal traction. They can aid in relaxation and help with sore muscles around your spine, contributing to overall therapeutic benefits. However, it’s important to remember that while inversion therapy can offer relief for symptoms associated with adult scoliosis, it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution and certainly not a cure. Specific conditions like osteoporosis or spinal osteoarthritis could make inversion therapy risky for some.

Benefits of Inversion Therapy for Adult Scoliosis  
Reduction in Back Pain 80% of participants
Improvement in Range of Motion 70% of participants

Before you decide to jump on an inversion table, it’s crucial you chat with your doctor. They can guide you on whether your condition makes you a good candidate for inversion therapy and ensure it’s done safely. After all, spinal health isn’t something to mess around with.

Do Inversion Tables Work for Treating Scoliosis?

When you’re eyeing an inversion table to treat scoliosis, it’s essential to understand how it might impact your condition. Let’s break it down.

Pain Relief

Considering inversion therapy for scoliosis, it’s all about alleviating back pain and relieving pressure on your spinal nerves. The idea is that by flipping the script on gravity, you get a kind of spinal decompression. This stretching out can make your back feel a bit better, especially if you’re dealing with compressed spine issues or sore muscles that often accompany adult scoliotic curves. But keep in mind, the relief you’re feeling? It’s usually just a temporary fix. Once you’re right-side up again, gravity takes over, and so could your pain.

Core Strengthening

About beefing up your core with an inversion table. Yes, you can use these tables to perform exercises like sit-ups or crunches, targeting your abs. Stronger core muscles are a plus for anyone looking to support their spinal health better and potentially reduce lower back pain. But don’t be fooled into thinking that this alone will straighten out scoliosis. Strengthening your core is more about augmentation rather than a solution. It’s a piece of the puzzle but not a cure.

Posture Correction

The topic of posture correction often pops up alongside inversion therapy discussions. While hanging upside down might give you temporary feelings of postural changes or spinal alignment, it’s not going to correct scoliosis. The condition is complex, often stemming from neurological factors that require specific treatment beyond simple spinal stretching or postural adjustments. Though increased blood flow and reduced back spasms from inversion therapy might make you feel a bit looser, they won’t realign a curved spine.

Remember, scoliosis is a structural condition. It’s about how your spine is built, not just how you’re holding it. While inversion tables offer some therapeutic benefits like temporary pain relief and core strengthening, they’re not the magic fix for scoliosis. It’s crucial to consider them as part of a broader treatment plan that might include physical therapy, bracing, or chiropractic care, especially for those with adult scoliosis looking to manage their condition and maintain spinal health without expecting a structural change from inversion alone.

Can Inversion Help Children with Scoliosis?

When you’re exploring ways to manage scoliosis, especially in children, you might wonder if inversion tables could offer any real help. Kids’ bodies are still growing, and that includes their spines. Unlike adults with set skeletal maturity, children and adolescents are in a constant state of development. This is why approaches like inversion therapy might make sense earlier rather than later.

Inversion therapy uses gravity to provide spinal traction, aiming to relieve back pain, improve spinal alignment, and possibly offer therapeutic benefits to those with scoliosis. Since the spine isn’t fully hardened in children, especially before they hit ages 12-14, starting inversion can help manage or even slow the progression of scoliosis through gentle, gravitational pull. But it’s not all about the potential for structural change.

Using inversion tables can also help alleviate sore muscles and compressed spine issues. This is crucial as children with scoliosis often experience a range of discomfort due to their condition. However, it’s not a one-size-fits-all remedy. Some conditions like bone infection, cancer, or compression fracture might make inversion therapy problematic. That’s why getting a doc’s nod before you proceed is key.

Safety is paramount when it comes to kids and inversion tables. They should never go on these devices without adult supervision. Plus, due to their smaller size, the equipment needs adjustments to fit them properly. Starting with sessions of 2-4 minutes and gradually increasing the time can help their bodies adjust to the sensation of being upside down without overwhelming them.

In a nutshell, children might not only find inversion therapy beneficial but also fun. Remember those days doing handstands and headstands? Kids generally adapt quickly to being inverted. Their openness to new experiences and natural flexibility means they’re often more receptive to inversion than adults. But again, this is a journey you should embark on after consulting with a healthcare professional, ensuring it meshes well with your child’s specific needs and condition.


Do Chiropractors Recommend Inversion Tables?

Absolutely, many chiropractors recognize inversion tables as a beneficial tool for certain individuals. In particular, those suffering from back pain or looking to enhance their spinal health might find solace in inversion therapy. This form of therapy utilizes gravity to relieve compressive force on the spine, aiming to increase the space between intervertebral discs.

Chiropractors often suggest inversion tables for patients with conditions like degenerative scoliosis or adult scoliotic curves, where the spine experiences structural changes. They’ve observed therapeutic benefits, such as reduced back pain and postural changes, for patients incorporating inversion therapy into their routine. However, it’s important to point out that while inversion can offer relief from sore muscles and compressed spines, it’s not a cure for scoliosis or a means to achieve significant structural change in adult scoliosis.

Be warned though, inversion tables aren’t suitable for everyone. People with certain conditions, like osteoporosis or high blood pressure, should steer clear due to potential risks. Your chiropractor can help you weigh the benefits against any possible downsides, ensuring that the inversion therapy aligns with your specific health scenario.

How Can I Reverse Scoliosis Naturally?

Trying to reverse scoliosis naturally is a common goal, especially for those eager to avoid adult spinal surgeries. However, it’s essential to set realistic expectations. Scoliosis, particularly in individuals past skeletal maturity, is a condition that typically doesn’t “reverse” in the traditional sense. Nonetheless, there are natural approaches to manage symptoms and improve quality of life.

Asymmetrical mobility exercises, which target the uneven forces placed on the body by scoliosis, can help in managing back pain and improving posture. These exercises are designed to bring about postural changes and enhance spinal alignment. Incorporating routine spinal health activities, like yoga or Pilates, can also support spinal strength and flexibility. These practices often involve movements such as headstands, handstands, and inversion, which have been shown to create spinal traction and temporarily relieve pressure on spinal discs and nerves.

Pairing these lifestyle and physical activity changes with regular chiropractic care can optimize spinal health. A chiropractor specializes in the musculoskeletal system and can offer guidance on spinal exercises and ergonomics that promote a healthy back, potentially mitigating the impact of conditions like degenerative scoliosis.

Remember, any approach to scoliosis, especially inversion therapy or exercises, should be discussed with a healthcare professional to ensure it’s appropriate for your unique condition. Engaging in activities that work towards maintaining spinal flexibility and muscle strength is beneficial, but managing expectations and understanding the nature of scoliosis is crucial.

About the author

Holden Desalles is a journalist in the new wellness space, covering topics such as CBD, adaptogens, and nootropics. He was formerly a staff writer at the millennial lifestyle website Thought Catalog.