Spinal Anatomy…and Scoliosis!

Spinal Anatomy…and Scoliosis! Written by Emma Yuguchi Your spine is extremely complex and in fact – pretty remarkable! Throughout my scoliosis journey, I was intrigued at the amazing complexity of the spine. Although scoliosis can sometimes be confusing, it was fascinating to learn a little bit more about the backbone of my body. I remember Read more about Spinal Anatomy…and Scoliosis![…]

Presentations for Scoliosis Warriors Heading Back to School

Presentations for Scoliosis Warriors Heading Back to School Going back to school with your new scoliosis brace can be the perfect opportunity to teach your classmates about scoliosis! You might feel a little nervous going back to school with your brace, and that’s perfectly normal. Your classmates are probably curious about your brace, so giving Read more about Presentations for Scoliosis Warriors Heading Back to School[…]

The Unknowns: Controllables vs Uncontrollables

The Unknowns: Controllables vs Uncontrollables Written by Annie Kramer At the age of 12, I was diagnosed with severe idiopathic scoliosis. Walking into a new school as a 6th grader had its challenges, especially with the additional challenge of my worsening spine. Before I knew it my doctors put me in a full-time hard shell Read more about The Unknowns: Controllables vs Uncontrollables[…]

A Long Journey from Anxiety to Gratitude

A Long Journey from Anxiety to Gratitude Written by Marja Heinonen My daughter, Kaisa, was seven when she was diagnosed with scoliosis. She wore scoliosis braces for nine years, from seven to 16. I could have hardly imagined that the foremost emotions seventeen years later would be gratitude and pride. But those are the feelings Read more about A Long Journey from Anxiety to Gratitude[…]

Let Them Play Sports! Addressing the Topic of Sports and Scoliosis

Let Them Play Sports! Addressing the Topic of Sports and Scoliosis The discovery of scoliosis or other spine structural changes often leads to a myriad of follow-up questions. Among them, discussion around the role of sports participation. Bottom line – let them continue to play sports! Let’s dig in a bit deeper. Today’s blog post Read more about Let Them Play Sports! Addressing the Topic of Sports and Scoliosis[…]

Creating a Welcoming Environment for Your Scoliosis Patients

Creating a Welcoming Environment for Your Scoliosis Patients When patients first enter our O&P offices, they are frequently already overwhelmed. Many have just found out about their scoliosis. Others have been being observed for years, but were just told that their curves have worsened. Emotions are high as they enter our office for their initial Read more about Creating a Welcoming Environment for Your Scoliosis Patients[…]

Tips for Heading Back to School from Fellow Bracers

Tips for Heading Back to School We polled our scoli warriors to help get you ready to go back to school with your scoliosis brace! We asked them about different topics, and here are their responses: “If you feel like you want to hide your brace, you can wear your pants/shorts over your brace, then Read more about Tips for Heading Back to School from Fellow Bracers[…]

What Causes Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis?

What Do We Know About What Causes Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis? HINT: It’s not caused by your child’s posture, backpack-carrying habits, or body mechanics Every so often, during my physical therapy evaluation with a family who has just discovered their teen has scoliosis, I will be asked the following set of questions: “Is it their posture Read more about What Causes Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis?[…]

National Scoliosis Center Uses iButton to Track Brace Wear Time in Patients

National Scoliosis Center Uses iButton to Track Brace Wear Time in Patients Successful scoliosis treatment for teens and children who select bracing to help them avoid surgery primarily depends on two factors – competency of the medical care team and brace wearing compliance by the patient. One of the biggest challenges for parents and the Read more about National Scoliosis Center Uses iButton to Track Brace Wear Time in Patients[…]

We’re In This Together

We’re In This Together: Creating A Support Network For Girls With Scoliosis Abby is 12 years old and was diagnosed with scoliosis in 2018. Shortly after, she was fit with her scoliosis brace at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Portland.  She and her mom, Christine, began looking to connect with fellow bracers around Abby’s age. Read more about We’re In This Together[…]

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A Day in a Boston Brace & Brace Tips


Hi my name is Aika. I wanted to share a little about a day in a Boston brace.  I have to wear my brace between 16-18 hour a day, so I choose my “off” time for when I am training as a competitive Irish dancer.  I wear my brace to school and only take it off when I get home to stretch, and then I go to dance classes or practice dance.  I also sleep in my brace.

ADJUSTING TO MY BRACE

At first, it definitely took some adjusting!  Start wearing your brace slowly. A few hours at a time and then add an additional hour each day, so that you don’t over shock your spine and have possible over-use discomfort or bruising.  This will also give you a better chance to run the marathon (not a sprint) as my doctor tells me. Remember the goal is to meet your hours per day on average, so some days you may be short due to discomfort or just life. Don’t sweat it -start each night with a new mindset to keep on track for the next day!

SCHOOL

At first, I did not tell my school friends about my brace, but then after I shared with my teachers and the administration, I began to share with my friends. They were mostly supportive. I found when I would get some comments about why I got to do something different, classmates were not fully informed or did not want to take the time to ask questions. My school administration and teachers have been SUPER supportive for my brace wearing at school. It helps that they have had other students before me that had bracing, as well as my parents and I clearly asking them for some accommodations due to the restrictions especially with modification due to COVID protocols.  I must say that having a brace during this pandemic has had some added challenges. Finally, if you wear your brace at school, see if you can get a rolling backpack to carry your books in. This has truly helped tremendously. Your orthopaedic surgeon should be able to write a doctor’s note to help you if your school needs some type of medical reason to allow.

CLOTHES

Some clothing tricks I have found is SEAMLESS is a must!  Test out a few seamless tank tops. I found some thin ones on Amazon that work amazing. Just make sure you know how high your brace goes up and how much it covers your body, so your have a high and low enough tank top.  I recommend getting the tank top longer than your brace area. That way, you can flip it up over the bottom of your brace to help your clothes not catch when you take your skirt, shorts or pants on and off. Also, your brace does not hook onto your clothing.  I found the most seamless clothing I could wear under the better -tank tops, underwear, etc.


SLEEPING

When sleeping, I recommend to sleep with a pillow between your knees and also with a wedge higher up to help reduce pressure on your brace, especially if you sleep on your side.  Try to sleep on the side which pushes in the least from your brace so that gravity cannot work against you.  It may take a few nights to find a comfortable position. Don’t give up - you will find that magical position.

STAYING COOL & PREVENTING SKIN IRRITATION

Remember you will get more hot when you wear your brace, so be sure to have plenty of seamless tank tops to change from night to morning before you go to school, some for school in case you get too hot at school or during PE,  and even some in the car in case you get hot. I found out that if your skin stays wet from heat, heat rashes form quickly and are a pain to get rid of. Gold Bond powder is a MUST have!  They have a roll that you can bring more easily to school to help it irritation or pain starts as well!