Lordosis basically points to the normal inward curving of the lumbar and cervical regions of the spine. Abnormal or excessive curvature is referred to as lumbar hyperlordosis commonly referred to as swayback. Lordosis occurs when the otherwise natural arch in the lower back curves more than normal. This in turn results in excess pressure exerted on the spine, eventually causing pain. People suffering from lordosis while taking a keen look at them from the side appear to have formed a “C” shape. They also appear to stick out their buttocks and stomachs. An easy way to check if you have lordosis is to basically lie on a hard, flat surface. Normally, one should be able to slide his or her hand under his or her lower back with very little space to spare. If one has lordosis, there is a lot of space between his or her hand and back.
Some of the known causes of lordosis include imbalances in muscle strength and length that in turn cause weak hamstrings or tight hip flexors. Health conditions can also cause lordosis. Osteoporosis, which is a very common bone disease is very likely to cause lordosis. It is a condition that basically as a result of weak bones that increases the likelihood of fractures.
Kyphosis is another health condition that can result in abnormal curvature. It primarily is a spine curvature disorder whereby the thoracic curvature appears rounded in an unusual way. If lordosis appears during childhood without any cause at all, it is known as benign juvenile lordosis.
Achondroplasia is another disorder that may result in or cause lordosis. It is a disorder where the bones of an individual grow abnormally and can result in dwarfism. Lordosis may give the impression of a strong back but it can lead to severe back pain due to strain on the spine.
In normal instances, people who have lordosis do not display any symptoms except for the evident spinal curvature. However, symptoms may appear in relation to the severity of the curvature and these include pain in the back and the pain may proceed to the legs. If the individual is experiencing other problems alongside lordosis, they may develop dysplasia of the hip, dystrophy of the muscles, or neuromuscular problems.
Changes in the bone structure and curvature can be detected through x-rays, bone scans, or even an MRI scan. X-rays are significant in measuring the extent of curvature in the lumbar region. Bone scans are done to rule out any probability of fractures and infections and MRIs are used to eradicate the chance of any spinal cord or nerve abnormalities. One can also use CT scans to get more detailed imagery of the muscles, organs, and bones of the lumbar region.
Lumbar Lordosis – Fix
Treatment for mild lordosis is not needed but for more severe cases of lordosis, a patient needs treatment. Lordosis may be treated by working to strengthen the hip extensors located at the back of the thighs and also by stretching the hip flexors found at the front of the thighs. Physical therapy programs can help an individual who is experiencing discomfort or even pain. In these programs, exercises are done with instructions from a therapist in order to strengthen the muscles.
One can also take medications such as NSAIDs or pain killers to reduce pain and swelling. For kids, if lordosis is detected, braces should be worn to prevent the situation from escalating. In the case of extremely severe lordosis, surgery is required where the spine is straightened using hooks, screws, and metal rods. Bone grafting can also be performed during surgery to promote stability of the spine and new growth.
Others may even consider the art of Tai Chi Chuan as an alternative treatment. It helps adjust the lower back curvature as well as the other spinal curvatures by specified re-alignments of the pelvis to the thighs. Yoga also is a very nice treatment option. It helps to promote body awareness, flexibility, strength, and range of motion.
In most cases, lordosis does not result in serious health problems if not treated. However, it also should be noted that the spine is a very critical organ that aids in body movement and flexibility and thus it is imperative to ensure the spine is healthy. Lack of treatment could therefore result in increased risk of having problems with legs, hip girdle, and internal organs. The importance of getting treatment can’t be further emphasized as correcting the curvature can help do away with complications that may develop later in life for example arthritis and chronic back pain.
Therefore, it is up to you to take initiatives in maintaining proper health of your spine through various workouts. You need to stay in shape as excessive fat can cause lordosis. Avoid sitting too much and ensure you regularly get check-ups. With these health tips on keeping your spine healthy, you are likely to prevent incidents of developing lordosis.