Why does my child need chiropractic care?
You’ll probably never see your child bend over to pick up a toy and freeze in pain saying, “Oh, my back went out again.” Spinal degeneration and vertebral subluxations (spinal misalignments) that cause that kind of pain will generally not appear in children - but it starts there.
Even the most natural birth causes stress on the developing spine. Improper lifting of a child out of a car seat, children falling asleep in a carseat, or diaper changing can cause the spine to be under stress, causing common newborn health complaints such as:
- Unexplained crying
- Poor appetite
- Earaches or ear infections
- Allergic reactions
Learning to walk
Others things to think about during the development of your child is when they are learning to walk. When your child pulls themselves up and stands, how do they get down? That’s right; they plop down onto their bottom and crawl away.
These constant and repeated jars to the spine will not in themselves cause a major spinal injury, but as they accumulate, repetitive stress injuries do occur.
Exploring Their Surroundings
During the first few years of life, children will develop from helpless infants into fearless adventurers. Bumps and falls come naturally as they explore the world around them. These bumps and falls cause trauma to the spine. With trauma, subluxations can occur, this is when spinal bones lose their normal position or ability to move freely or it causes problems during major stages of growth and development.
Chiropractors don’t treat or cure illnesses. However, many common childhood disorders may be the result of nervous system interference or malfunction caused by spinal related problems such as:
- Learning disorders
These are ONLY a few examples, but appropriate chiropractic care can help locate and correct these problems and restore normal spinal and nervous system function.
The Vertebral Subluxation Complex
Spinal trauma as mentioned above can cause lasting effects: delicate nerve tissue can be damaged resulting in interference with the brain’s ability to send nerve impulses to organs, tissues and muscles; discs, blood vessels and other soft tissues can swell and become inflamed; the body may respond with bone spurs and other abnormal bone growth; and various systems through the body may malfunction.
Your Child’s Developing Spine
Birth - 5 years; most critical time period. They will have most of their minor traumas and repetitive stress injuries to the spine.
5 - 10 years; school/recess stress, playing organized sports and generally leaving themselves open to repeated falls and tumbles resulting in their own spinal injuries.
10 - 15 years; last spinal stage of development. Common stressors on their spines:
- Improper backpack loading/carrying
- Poor posture
- An inactive or sedentary lifestyle
- Repetitive sports movements
- Typical sports injuries
- Being hit in the head with a ball
- Tackled on the field
- Falling off a skateboard or rollerblades
The Benefits of Chiropractic Care
There are different phases of degeneration in your spine. Phase 1 degeneration means the original damage to your spine occurred 20 years ago. If you are in Phase 2, the original damage to your spine was probably about twenty to forty years ago.
Years ago when my oldest son was three (before I was a chiropractor), he had an accident while playing outside. He hurt his ankle to the point that it was really hard for him to put any kind of weight on it. We knew we needed to get it looked at, so we went to our family chiropractor. After she made sure it wasn't broken, and finished the chiropractic exam, she carefully adjusted his ankle. He shyly tested things out by gently putting weight on his foot, smiling with a surprised look on his face that it didn't hurt anymore. He was able to walk normally within a few minutes and was jumping off the couch later that day.
I have seen first hand in my family, as well as with countless patients here at Keystone, how chiropractic has truly changed lives for the better. This story and many others like it around the world is my “why”. I love what I do and love to help others enjoy life to its fullest!
Don’t keep this post a secret. Share this with your family and friends. Share the gift of chiropractic with them.