Many times when a child is diagnosed with scoliosis their parents aren’t sure exactly what that means.
As they do their scoliosis research, their worries begin. The prognosis of scoliosis isn’t good. Bracing results aren’t good. Surgery outcomes are abysmal. Conservative alternative treatment is controversial.
Many orthopedic doctors spend less than 5 minutes with their patients after saying the phrase that changes their lives forever: “Your child has scoliosis.” Panic becomes the order of the day, which makes clear thinking more difficult. Utterly overwhelmed, the desire grows to just go along with what the surgeon recommends. But, you double your resolve to find a better way.
These ups and downs are natural, and unfortunately you and your spouse may be at different points of this cycle. This may cause irritation and arguing, often driving people to be more dogmatic about a stance they hold at the time. How can this phenomenon be managed in such a way that family harmony is maintained?
Here are some ideas:
- Set limits on how long you allow yourselves to discuss this each day, and then follow them.
- Stop your research for the moment when you become tired. At least take a break, get refreshment, or go for a walk.
- Write your questions down so that you can get answers from many sources. Put each question at the top of a new sheet of paper. Write the answers you find underneath, and make sure you also include a note about where you got that answer. This process will make thinking in an organized way easier when decision time comes.
- Keep in mind that both of you love your child and both of you want what’s best for them. Remind each other of that daily.
- Don’t allow fear to make your decision for you. Learn how to emotionally regulate your anxieties so that you can make a better decision.
- Include your child in the decision. It’s their spine. In a few short years they will be an adult, and any decision made for a child during their teen years will affect them for the rest of their life. It will help greatly if they are a part of it.
Scoliosis is not an easy diagnosis, and it’s difficult for the whole family, not just for the patient. Make family harmony and unity a priority and the journey will be easier.
Helpful resources and links:
Do your own posture check at home with our “cheat sheet.” RHINO Scoliosis Posture Check