Chiropractic care is safe and effective for treating children of all ages. Chiropractic care for your child may look very different than chiropractic care that you've received for yourself. Specifically, the chiropractic adjustment for infants uses as much force as you would use to test a ripe tomato. It's very gentle. Each infant, toddler or child is treated as an individual and the care rendered will be specific and appropriate for your child and their body.
Why would my child need chiropractic care? Did you know that your spine doubles in size in the first 24 months of life? And babies' aren't born with curves in their neck and low back? At 3 months old, when your baby starts to lift their head, the cervical curve in the neck starts to form and when your baby starts walking at 1 year old is when the lumbar (low back) curve develops. And, learning to roll over, sit up, crawl and walk are all developmental milestones that can be affected by the presence of chiropractic subluxations. Having your child treated by a chiropractor to remove nerve interference and improve joint function will start your child on a path of lifelong health and wellness.
Pregnancy and giving birth is part of life for many people. Growing a human in-utero is no small task for mother or baby. Baby may experience constraints in the uterus as it grows. In pregnancy, the hormone relaxin increases in the mother's body to promote the relaxation of the mother's joints to allow for more space in the pelvis during birth. This increase in ligament laxity, or ligament looseness, can cause chiropractic subluxations in the pelvis, sacrum and spine of the mother. Chiropractic subluxations can also cause abnormal tension on the uterosacral ligament and round ligament which are ligaments that attach the uterus to the body. Abnormal tension on these ligaments can cause constraints on the uterus as well. These chiropractic subluxations, or misalignments, and the associated soft tissue restrictions minimize space in the uterus for the baby to move. These uterine constraints decrease baby's ability to move freely in the uterus and baby can end up in a breech position and unable to turn into the head down position for birth. Dr. Kristy is an ICPA, International Chiropractic Pediatric Association, Webster Technique certified chiropractor can help correct these subluxations and release the soft tissue restrictions in the mama so baby has optimal space to move and get in to the proper position for birth.
Mother and baby work harmoniously through labor to bring baby into the world. Babies are birthed in different ways and all exert forces onto the spine of the baby. Even a vaginal birth puts forces on the babies spine when it's making its way through the birthing canal. Interventions, such as cesarean section, forceps, vacuum suction, and manual traction, put large amounts of force on a baby's spine and joints. Having your baby assessed by a chiropractor can help ensure that your baby's spine and nervous system are function properly after birth.
Chiropractic care can also help with breastfeeding challenges. The Journal of Midwifery and Womens Health, Volume 32, Issue 8 (October 2009) Contribution of Chiropractic Therapy to Resolving Suboptimal Breastfeeding: A Case Series of 114 Infants showed that the most common age of referral of an infant to a chiropractor was 1 week and concluded that all children showed some improvements with 78% (N=89) being able to exclusively breastfeed after 2-5 treatments within a 2 week period of time. In relation to breastfeeding, noticing if your baby prefers to breastfeed on one side versus the other or prefers a certain hold during breastfeeding (i.e cradle hold versus football hold) would be signs that your baby would benefit from chiropractic care. These are indicators that there is restriction or pain when your baby is breastfeeding. Chiropractic care helps restore motion and reduce pain.
Have you noticed that your baby's head is getting flat on one side? And baby prefers to sleep with their head turned to the same side? This can lead to asymmetry of the cranial bones, or plagiocephaly, if left untreated. Chiropractic care can help restore motion in the cervical spine (neck) so baby can turn their head both ways which allows for proper cranial molding.
Other conditions that chiropractic can help with in children:
chronic ear infections
Children deserve the best chance to express health and their peak potential. Chiropractic maximizes that potential.