Brooks deals with scoliosis

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Brooks deals with scoliosis

Brooks stretches on the bar.

Brooks stretches on the bar.

Jennifer Sams

Brooks stretches on the bar.

Jennifer Sams

Jennifer Sams

Brooks stretches on the bar.

Jennifer Sams, Reporter

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Junior Taylor Brooks starts off her day almost like any other teenager. She wakes up, gets out of bed, cleans her face, and finally goes to pick out her outfit for the day.

However, this isn’t as easy of a task as it seems.

As someone dealing with scoliosis, Brooks is often self conscious of the way her condition affects her appearance. Her spine is off center, her hips are at different heights, and so are her shoulders. Scoliosis is a condition where the spine of a person has a sideways curve, which can be either an “S” or “C” shape. She doesn’t want to wear tight shirts because then she feels that her her back condition is more evident.

“On a scale of one to ten, my insecurity is probably at a six,” said Brooks.

Bracing or surgery can be used as treatment, but minor scoliosis may only be observed.

Brooks was first diagnosed with scoliosis in her freshman year, which resulted in her having to quit dance.

Her pain was constant, and any form of activity would cause her to experience pain in her back.

“I could barely do some form of activity, and there would be intense pain in my lower back. That was when I kind of realized that there was something wrong with my back,” said Brooks.

The event that caused her scoliosis was a growth spurt, where she went from being 4’9 to 5’4 in a span of roughly three months. Her muscles couldn’t catch up quick enough, causing them to ball up and tug at her spine.

“The doctor said I could actually be 5’8, if my spine was straight,” said Brooks.

In the summer before her sophomore year, her scoliosis got worse.

“People with scoliosis aren’t really supposed to overwork themselves, and I did too much in one day. I moved the wrong way, and then my spine popped and started to hurt a lot,” said Brooks.

Currently, the top of her spine is at a 10 degree curve and the base is at a 20 degree curve, forming the shape of an“S.”

Brooks goes to the scoliosis specialist every 6 months, massage therapy once every week, and physical therapy two days every week. In physical therapy, she does stretches and abdominal workouts.

For Brooks, taking Tylenol and laying down with a heating pack across her back helps ease the pain.

“Stretching does help, but not as much as heat and Tylenol does,” said Brooks.

Luckily, she does not need surgery currently. If the curve of her spine goes up to 40 degrees, then she will be a candidate for surgery.

She knows two others that have experienced scoliosis, which reminds her that she isn’t alone on her journey to recovery. Her biggest supporters are her mom and her dance teachers.

“To me, scoliosis means something. It means that you are different. It’s okay to be different, even if it caused you pain because God will help you get through it,” said Brooks.

She’s pushing to recovery with a hope-filled heart and refuses to lose that hope.

“Just keep pushing through, and don’t give up,” said Brooks.

She hopes to make a smooth recovery soon and be able to carry out her daily activities without any pain.

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