Misalignment Can Start from the Day Your Baby Is Born
The birth process has the potential to cause misalignment in many kids. As a chiropractor for babies and children, Oaktree Health is passionate about seeing newborns and children grow to meet the full potential of their health.
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Many children come to our pediatric chiropractic clinic for maintenance and prevention. Though your child likely doesn’t yet feel any symptoms, their spines face many challenges. This can start from the birth process—and continues through learning to roll, crawl, and walk as infants, to tumbling out of trees, falling off bicycles, and other injuries. Sports are major source of potential spinal misalignments, whether from more obvious contact sports like hockey, football, and soccer, or sports associated with repetitive strain, such as ballet or gymnastics. Another serious concern many parents have is for their children’s posture. Without the right posture, activities and habits such as watching TV, reading, playing video games, and using computers and smartphones create lots of long-term stress on the spine. If left uncorrected, these causes of spinal misalignment can lead to a spine that is growing in the wrong position, compromising the nervous system housed inside.
Is Pediatric Chiropractic Care safe?
Pediatric chiropractic care is tailored to the specific needs of children, and is both gentle and safe. Our chiropractor for babies and children adjusts their spines using a special low-force method. The chiropractic techniques used when treating infants are so gentle that infants sometimes sleep through their entire adjustment! Dr. Emilie takes a special interest in adjusting children and has taken advanced training, becoming certified through the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (the ICPA) and the Academy of Family Practice and Council on Chiropractic Pediatrics (CACCP).
How Much Treatment Will My Child Need?
Children respond very quickly to chiropractic care—much faster, in fact, than adults do, since children tend to have many fewer years of damage to their bodies that must be treated. The amount of treatment needed will depend on your child’s unique situation, but after your first appointment we will recommend a specific plan, and walk through the outline of that plan with you.
Will My Child Require a Chiropractor for the Rest of Their Life?
The choice is always yours! Many parents choose to keep their children in regular pediatric chiropractic care to ensure their spine keeps developing properly. This is a pro-active approach to healthcare. The reality is that whatever stresses and traumas have happened to their spine in the past may continue to happen in the future through sports, injuries, or poor posture—staying on top of it is a great way to prevent of mitigate long-term problems.
What Conditions Can a Pediatric Chiropractor Treat?
At Oaktree, Dr. Emilie uses combination of gentle spinal adjustments, craniosacral therapy, gentle limb mobilizations, and neurosensory integration to address joint dysfunction and restore brain-body communication for your child. All treatments are modified depending on your child’s developmental stage and their specific needs.
Baby chiropractors address your infant’s neuro-musculo-skeletal system (nerves, muscles, and bones). Problems with this system sometimes seem disconnected from the symptoms presenting, but as we resolve the physical issues, we often see an improvement in the body’s ability to heal and self-regulate. These improvements are seen most dramatically in children and infants who may not be able to express their discomfort in any way other than crying, fussing, and outbursts. We will analyze, explain, and address any spinal dysfunctions in your child’s system. The most common reasons that parents bring their children to the pediatric chiropractor include:
- Fussy babies
- Nursing difficulties
- Poor sleep
- Ear infections
- Frequent colds
- Asthma and allergies
- Growing pains
- Sports injuries
- Back and neck pain
Can Pediatric Chiropractic Help My Child Sleep Better?
If there is a vertebral subluxation (misalignment) in the upper neck, this tension will interfere with the sleep centre in the brain and brainstem, preventing proper sleep patterns. Headaches, joint pain, and other discomforts can also affect the quality of your child’s sleep, and make falling asleep more difficult. Restful sleep is an important part of healing and allows your body to recharge. Correcting subluxations will help your child settle into a more peaceful sleep.
My Child Is Often Sick—Can Chiropractic Help Them Stay Healthy?
The most common finding in a child’s spinal examination is vertebral subluxation (misalignment) in the upper neck. This creates tension on the brainstem and upper spinal cord, areas which are integral to proper immune function. If tension is present, it is common for children to have more colds, flus, ear infections, and allergies. Correcting these subluxations allows the brain to communicate properly with the body, so that the body can heal itself more efficiently. The most common observation we hear from parents whose children are under regular chiropractic care is that they get sick much less often than those around them—and if they do get sick, they recover much more quickly. It is amazing to see the power the body has to heal itself!
How Soon after Birth Should I Bring My Newborn to a Baby Chiropractor?
It’s never too early—your newborn can be brought in for their first check-up as soon as you are ready to leave the house. If an adjustment is needed, this will help ensure better function overall and can help with sleep, breastfeeding, digestion, and more. It’s even more important to get checked as soon as possible if there were any interventions or difficulties during labour. In fact, medical studies have shown that even in a natural delivery (no intervention or pulling of the neck), 80% of newborns have a misalignment in their upper neck. Newborns can be safely treated by a chiropractor for babies from the day they are born. Some parents even arrange for their first appointment on the way home from the hospital. Dr. Emilie’s babies each got checked within hours of birth—though it helps, of course, that she could check them herself!
Why Hasn’t My Pediatrician or Medical Doctor Recommended Chiropractic Care?
Medical Doctors and pediatricians are not usually taught about chiropractic care in medical school, and aren’t generally familiar with how chiropractic care works. Ideally, your child would have both a pediatrician and a chiropractor for babies and children. Your pediatrician or medical doctor will be available for crisis care, and your chiropractor will focus on quality-of-life care and boosting the body’s natural ability to thrive. Because chiropractic care is new to most medical practitioners, we are always available and happy to answer any of your practitioners’ questions and provide them with the latest research on pediatric chiropractic care.
For more information on chiropractic care for babies and children, please see the ICPA’s chiropractic research page.