Frequent headaches, recurring neck and back pain, discomfort in your joints – these are all signs that your body may need a chiropractic adjustment. But, for babies, who cannot tell us what they need, how do you know when to seek the attention of a chiropractor? And, is it safe? There are a handful of chiropractors who have experience treating infants and young children. In fact, many parents turn to a baby chiropractor for colic treatment. Read on to learn more about how a chiropractor can help your child.
How safe is chiropractic care for my baby?
As a parent, one of your top priorities is making sure your baby is healthy and happy. So, it is understandable that you may have concerns about seeking the help of a chiropractor for your newborn. Your first question is likely, “Is chiropractic care safe for my baby?” The answer is not only a yes, but studies have shown that chiropractic care can have many benefits for children as they grow and develop.
If you’re unfamiliar with how a chiropractor treats infants, you likely imagine it as a tortuous situation for your baby with lots of pushing, pulling, pops and cracks. This obviously could be a scary experience for a baby, as well as the parents. But the truth is that proper adjustments for infants are gentle. In many cases, your baby may not even notice the adjustment. The results of a pediatric chiropractic adjustment can often make a huge difference. After all, before your baby was born they were in a very confined space.
As children grow and develop, their bodies tend to be more responsive to chiropractic treatment meaning less pressure is needed during the adjustment. When treating babies, chiropractors apply gentle pressure with their fingertips. A safe, chiropractic adjust for your baby will help place their body in the proper position to keep your baby comfortable and promote overall health.
When should I consider taking my baby to the chiropractor
In the womb, babies may lay in distorted positions. This can cause stress on their developing spine and nervous system. It’s also possible for additional traumas to occur during birth. For this reason, some parents of newborns may want to consider seeing a chiropractor very soon after giving birth.
Once your baby is born, you may still have difficulty knowing when your child is need of chiropractic care. But there are indicators that something may be going on that needs your chiropractor’s attention. Poor sleep, persistent colds and sore throats, sensitivity to loud noises, trouble with coordination and noticeable restricted movement of the head are all red flags that something could be wrong.
While babies may not suffer from the same symptoms for which adults seek chiropractic care, proper adjustments can be beneficial for their growing and developing bodies. There are also conditions seen in babies that could be treated by a chiropractor.
Seeing a Baby Chiropractor for Colic –
Prolonged crying could be a sign that your baby has colic, which is discomfort in the abdominal area, usually a result of gas. In many cases, colic can begin as early as three weeks old. While little is known about the causes of colic, chiropractic care is a safe treatment to reduce the symptoms.
Trouble Breastfeeding –
If your baby has had trouble latching and feeding during breastfeeding, it could be due to movement restrictions in the shoulders, neck or jaw. Chiropractic care helps babies overcome those difficulties. Appropriate adjustments can increase your baby’s ability to latch, which can greatly decrease stress for both mother and child.
Ear Infections –
Many children suffer from ear infections. However, infants and younger children are more prone because of their developing Eustachian tube, which allows more bacteria to enter the middle ear where ear infections typically occur. While some ear infections clear up on their own, others may require antibiotics. Another alternative is seeing a chiropractor. An adjustment can improve drainage of the middle ear and decrease the occurrence of ear infections.
Another painful condition seen in infants is Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, or GERD. This causes acid from the stomach to leak into the esophagus. Acid blockers can help reduce the symptoms, but studies have shown that many times a misaligned spine may be at the root of the problem. Relieving pressure on the spine through chiropractic adjustments can ease the pain and address the issue.
What are the benefits of chiropractic care for babies?
While chiropractic adjustments are useful in treating specific conditions, there can be many benefits to your child’s overall health. Starting early could be the key. Many children who receive regular treatment from a chiropractor see benefits including:
- Increased nervous system function – The body’s overall health and wellness is affected by the proper function of the nervous system.
- Proper brain development – Adjustments promote proper development of the brain and nerves.
- Boosted immune system – Chiropractic care can reduce the number of colds, earaches and other health issues.
- Improved behavior – Staying aligned can improve sleep patterns, which can be a factor in your child’s behavior.
- Decreased chance of headaches, posture problems and neck issues – Regular adjustments reduce the chance your child will develop spine and neck issues later in life.
If you still have questions about the effectiveness and safety of chiropractic care for infants, talk to your child’s pediatrician. They can help to ease your fears about the process.