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25) The Phases of Lateral Deviation

Let’s analyze the process that leads the body to develop a common scoliosis. Let’s observe, thereby, in detail the five phases that bring the skull to sink, the physiological curvature to change and the spine to undergo torsion.

 PHASE 0 

The first phase to analyze is obviously Phase 0. In this phase we concentrate on the skull, as it is from here that the process originates that leads to scoliosis. In fact, as we have repeated at other points, this is a descending process, which begins with the skull and has repercussions as far down as the soles of the feet.

In Phase 0, shown in picture 60, we take as an example an ideal human skeleton. Let’s start from a hypothetical position of perfect symmetry.

The blue line that divides the skeleton in half ends perpendicular to the floor. This line that divides the skeleton into two perfect halves, two mirror images, is called the vertical line.

This physical state of perfection is not met with in nature, except in rare cases. All human beings (the professional model, the athlete, the farmer, the office worker, etc.) are imbalanced, mostly to the one side or the other. Some more, some less.

 

mandible

Certainly the degree of asymmetry differs from case to case. There are people who because of their asymmetry remain disabled, people who all in all succeed in living a dignified life, and finally there are those who succeed in becoming life-long athletes. It all depends on the extent of the asymmetry.

Assuming that the image portrayed in picture 60 is a perfect skeleton, extremely rare in nature, we begin to make it conform to what is usually seen in life by actually reducing the dental height, until preventing the skull from governing itself. In picture 61 a reduction of dental height is carried out on the left dental arch.

The first thing that shows up is a loss of symmetry of the dental arches that leads as a result to asymmetrical work on the part of the masseter and temporal muscles (levator muscles of the jaw).

With the removal of dental height on the left dental arch the skull loses its support on the left side. Conversely, the support of the skull remains unchanged on the right side.

As a result the masseters shorten themselves, forcing a contact at that point precisely due to the lack of a reaction force (Newton’s Third Law) on the part of the teeth. As we have already said, it should be the teeth which counterbalance the force exerted by the masseter and temporal muscles. We see how the skeleton, no longer perfect, begins to take on the aspect of a common asymmetrical skeleton.

PHASE 1

In Phase 1 the skull, forced to sink down, conforms to the asymmetrical condition which, in descending fashion, is destined to provoke chain reactions in the rest of the skeleton, which takes on an asymmetrical appearance. Let’s look at this in detail.

Let’s begin by saying that the skull is run through by a yellow line. This yellow line divides the skull into two equal halves. This line allows us to see the change in inclination of the skull in respect to the jaw (orange line) and to the vertical line (blue line).

Given the lack of dental height on the left side, the skull begins to give way somewhat on the left side as it is being pulled downward by the masseter and temporal muscles.

Falling to the left, the skull alters its inclination in respect to the axes of reference. In picture 61 the axes of reference are the light-blue vertical line and the orange horizontal line (the line of the jaw).

With an inclination to the left the skull begins sinking truly in this direction. As it sinks the musculature on the right extends, pulling the right shoulder towards it, which begins to rise.

As a result, the entire right side of the body (left in the picture 61) raises itself, causing the pelvis to rotate in a clockwise direction. The rotation of the pelvis draws the leg up and changes the arch support of the right foot.

Symptoms in Phase 1 are very mild. Muscle tension is not excessive, for which reason psychological tension is also limited.

With progression of the fall of the skull we pass to Phase 2.

lateral deviation2

 

PHASE 2 

During Phase 2 we start to observe the first changes that take place in other parts of the skeleton. The descending nature of this phenomenon starts to become apparent.

In Phase 2, due to the effect of the masseter and temporal muscles, the skull continues its clockwise rotation, changing its inclination in respect to the blue vertical line and comes closer to the jaw (to the left), there where it lacks support.

Due to the alteration of the inclination of the skull, which moves from right to left, the right shoulder is drawn upward.

The skull pulls the right shoulder towards itself because it is kept at that point through the participation of the rhomboid muscles and those of the neck.

The entire right side begins to tense up and as a result increases the clockwise rotation of the pelvis.

The first significant difference in Phase 2 in regard to Phase1 is to be found in the inclination of the jaw, which tends to come nearer to the skull there where it lacks dental height. The entire jaw lifts itself momentarily only in this phase as it is pulled upward by a skull which is trying to remain straight on its vertical axis.

We can say that Phase 2 is an aggravation of Phase1. The significant difference remains the change in inclination of the jaw, which defers to the skull.

lateral deviation 3

Due to the change in inclination of the jaw, the supra- and infrahyoid muscles take on asymmetrical muscular burdens. These muscular burdens provoke a series of symptoms precisely in this area due to an unphysiological circulation of the blood.

The problems seen here affect various areas: the tonsils, the throat, the oral cavity, the thyroid, speech formation, swallowing, etc.

The left side of the body becomes taut and contracts in spasms, creating suffering which the individual interprets as being psychological, precisely for the reason that he cannot identify the real cause. As the sinking of the skull progresses, the intervertebral compressions increase until they press on the blood vessels.

Finally, as a last result, the right side of the pelvis lifts, altering also the arch support of the feet. Often posturologists treat this with insoles, but it is clear that this is merely a “band aid” for a problem that has its origin elsewhere. As written previously, whoever finds himself in this phase feels vaguely unwell in such a way that is not easy to define, and has psychosomatic problems.

PHASE 3

Phase 3 is the penultimate one in terms of an aggravation of the overall asymmetry of the body. In this phase the body begins to undergo serious changes that alter it dramatically.

In Phase 3 we see right away two notable differences in regard to the previous phase:

1) The skull has continued its rotation towards the left shoulder while the jaw has not returned to the line of the vertical axis.

2) The jaw changes its inclination once again, returning parallel to the ground. With the change in inclination of the jaw, also the skull continues its rotation due to its sinking towards the left side (on the right side of the picture).

As well, during this phase, the skull is pulled downwards by the muscles of the back. This brings on the phenomenon of scoliosis.

How is scoliosis brought about, in this phase?

In Phase 2 the muscles of the right side of the body are in spasm, in order to keep the skull from falling to the left. At this point the central part of the back begins to curve to the left, creating a scoliosis. That happens because the muscles of the left side of the body contract and in this way pull the spine with them. At this point the center of mass of the skull returns to its axis and reduces the muscular tension on the right side of the body. It is this phenomenon that generates scoliosis.

This process takes place because scoliosis is in fact a compensatory mechanism that serves to bring the center of gravity of the skull back to the vertical line (blue line) with a resulting reduction in muscular strain.

As we have said previously, with the addition of scoliosis the center of mass of the skull returns to its axis, and the right shoulder sinks. The sinking of the right shoulder relaxes the tension in the musculature of the right side. At the same time, due to the shortening of the muscles on the left side the pelvis begins a counterclockwise rotation.

In this condition, the three yellow lines of shoulder, pelvis and feet turn out to be almost parallel.

This example demonstrates very well how the center of equilibrium always tends to keep the skull on its vertical axis which passes through the center of gravity.

Due to this involuntary, unaware and unconscious activity, the body is trying, either physically or psychologically, to keep the skull on its vertical axis.

This process has been described in Phases 6 and 7 of the displacement seen in profile. Thanks to continuing strain, in this phase we can have serious psychological symptoms (anxiety and panic attacks) and the rise of physical problems (herniated discs and gastrointestinal problems) due to the considerable amount of compressions that have come to be created in the body.

lateral deviation 4

PHASE 4

We have arrived at the last phase of our frontal displacement. At this stage there is an aggravation of the previous phase that accentuates the compensations that are created.

As can be seen in picture 64 the skull continues to collapse to the left. It is just for this reason that the body finds a new way to compensate by means of the right shoulder that is pulled downward.

The lowering of the right shoulder depends on two simultaneous and interlocking phenomena:

1) The musculature of the right side tenses up like crazy

2) The skull, in order to return to its axis, increases the curvature of a spine already sharply arched towards the left.

Both of these phenomena contribute to the lowering of the right shoulder. At this point the pelvis also continues its clockwise rotation, pulling the muscles of the left side down.

Thus we have a higher left hip, which pulls the left leg with it, making it shorter than the right one.

The rib cage is forced into a spasm, encaged by the muscles. It is affected by the displacement of the spine and of the elevation of the left shoulder.

infografica 195

 

In this condition the rib cage compresses inexorably everything that there is within it; the heart, the lungs, the liver, the stomach and the diaphragm.

Due to these compressions, a number of internal organs can be subject to particular symptoms, such as shortness of breath, panic attacks, and gastrointestinal problems.

The muscles of the neck at this point are tense and painful. They work asymmetrically due to their varying lengths. They too are forced to adapt to the compensatory situation.

In the area of the throat, on the other hand, symptoms and common pathologies are generated such as recurring sore throats, thyroid problems, problems with swallowing, speech problems, etc.

Regarding the pelvis and the legs, in such a condition it becomes very difficult to achieve any notable results in sports. Thus, as a result many people tend to abandon the athletic activities they are very fond of.

In fact, people with a serious asymmetry are victims of frequent accidents, joint problems, constant pain, etc.

In this last phase the organism is definitely suffering. It presents with a multitude of symptoms, either physical or psychological, that often are attributed to stress.

It is interesting to see how the human body “curls up” on itself. This “curling up” can be devastating for the health, over time.

Luckily, my own frontal situation was still in a Phase 3, but if I hadn’t taken action in a timely fashion I would

have reached the phase just described, Phase 4.

The picture 65, on the side, portrays me at the start of the straightening process. Although my chief problem was a notable lack of profile form caused by a huge lack of vertical dimension in my teeth in the premolar and molar areas, I was also not in good shape from a frontal point of view. In fact, as indicated previously, I was in a Phase 3.

infografica 196

My belly falls outwards due to the compressions of the diaphragm; the spinal column shows a distinct deviation to the left.

Even though I was very thin, I seemed to have a “beer belly” due to a severe lumbar lordosis that pushed it outwards. The lumbar lordosis, apart from pushing the viscera of the abdominal cavity outwards, pressed also on the diaphragm, impeding its proper function.

In picture 65 a curvature of the spine to the left is seen (dotted red line). It can be seen the considerable asymmetry of the lower abdominal muscles in the area of the pelvis. How the left abdominal area has come to be much more protruding.

In this condition I had considerable problems with breathing as well as considerable gastrointestinal problems.

In picture 66, given in evidence, the compressions are affecting normal inhalation in the thoracic area. Such an asymmetry generates the symptoms described above, so much is clear.

In any case, we are not all imbalanced in the same way, and it not a given that a serious skeletal asymmetry brings a serious symptomatic with it.

Often it happens that one sees crookedly-made people or those with a facial asymmetry who however do not have any symptoms. Then, there are people that we see are relatively balanced but who present with a definitive symptomatic. Let’s see if we can understand the reason.

The main reason lies in the unpredictability of the muscular compensation. In some individuals the compressions can affect the arteries, in others the esophagus, the stomach or the diaphragm. When it is the stomach that is compressed, the symptoms present in the form of gastrointestinal problems, rather than in muscular complaints, as in the case of compressions of the cervical spine. For this reason, due to asymmetry some individuals may suffer more than others.

In addition it must be said that not all those in Phase 4 present with an imbalance apparent to the naked eye. My case was not one of those.

infografica 197

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