New patients in a chiropractor’s office who see an infant or young child often comment: “I didn’t know you treated children!” It really shouldn’t be so surprising; the spine is subject to stress and strain from the very moment of birth. Birth itself is probably the first shock to the spine and nervous system that the infant receives. Think about the pressure on the infant at the time of delivery and the potential pull on the infant’s head and neck even during a normal, uncomplicated delivery.
We have always been told to use caution when holding a baby. That’s because the child’s neck is very weak. The muscles have not developed sufficiently to hold the head erect. The very weight of the child’s head is more than the neck muscles can carry.
As the child develops there is the usual progression of crawling, walking, running and other activities. During childbirth activities, how often have we witnessed a child fall? In fact, there are many falls which occur while simply learning to walk. Because of the elasticity of youth, a child is able to bounce back again. But there is always the question “Was there any harm done?”
The chiropractic profession places considerable emphasis on structural balance and has attributed considerable importance to the potential problems which can result from these seemingly harmless childhood incidents. The profession has maintained that these seemingly minor accidents are an element to consider in the health of your youngsters.
We have limited this article only to the mechanical and structural imbalances which relate to your child’s health. There are, obviously, other factors that can influence and impact upon a child’s health. We have attempted to illustrate the importance of maintaining a properly functioning nervous system that allows the body to perform at its maximum capacity. The strains children are subjected can easily be a contributing factor in creating spinal subluxations (malfunctions) and/or nerve irritation. Many conditions can be caused by spinal derangements producing irritations to the nervous system. Common disorders of childhood such as colds, constipation, asthma, colic, enuresis (bedwetting), and ear infections (otitis media), may be helped through spinal adjustments (manipulations) and conservative chiropractic management.
Not all conditions will respond to conservative chiropractic management and your doctor of chiropractic is fully trained to recognize when referral and/or other interventions are needed.
Some childhood conditions such as functional scoliosis (spinal curvature) may be correctable with chiropractic care. These are too often neglected and plague that child throughout his or her lifetime. Many of your neighbors and friends have their children’s spines checked by a doctor of chiropractic because it gives them confidence and reassurance. The consideration of chiropractic care for your child is reasonable and logical. If parents were as concerned about having their children’s spines checked for minor derangements (subluxations) as they are about having their children’s teeth checked for cavities, they would be helping their youngsters to attain a healthier state of well-being. Proper spinal care is important to your child’s health. Don’t neglect a spinal examination in his or her next health check-up.
Yours in Health,
Dr. Brian Moravec