Many people believe that chiropractic care is only needed for adults. After all, young children don’t have the same “wear and tear” on their bodies as adults. But in come cases, infants and children may need some help feeling their best, especially if minor traumas have caused tension and strain on their developing spines.
Causes of Spinal Pain and Injury in Children
While parents strive to prevent injuries in their little ones, it is sometimes possible that small accidents can discomfort. Chiropractors treat subluxations — that is situations where vertebrae are misaligned and cause pain or inhibit movement or development — in people of all ages. Subluxations can interfere with messages sent between the body and brain, leading to pain or other issues.
Some causes of subluxations in children include:
Childbirth. Being born is no easy process and it can sometimes leave lasting effects on babies. Difficult births requiring a doctor to pull or twist baby from the womb (or use tools to assist in birth) can cause misalignments that led to your newborn’s discomfort.
Falls, slips and bumps. As children learn to roll over, crawl, walk and then run, accidents happen. Children lose their balance, slip or fall many times throughout their development. Some accidents can cause subluxations that lead to further issues or pain.
Car seat and crib use. Car seats can put added pressure on small spines, especially at ages where children cannot yet support their own head. How children are positioned in cribs and bassinets, along with baby swings and children’s seats can also lead to subluxations.
Hip, spine and back issues. Underlying issues such as unbalanced hips or uneven legs can cause discomfort, as can undiagnosed spinal conditions such as scoliosis. Overtime, these issues can lead to discomfort or injuries as kids run, play, jump and grow.
Does My Child Need To See a Chiropractor?
While it may seem unusual to make an appointment for your child at the chiropractor, it can be in their best interest. It is usually impossible for parents to determine if a subluxation has occurred, but a skilled chiropractor can take symptoms into account during an exam.
Some common symptoms of subluxations in children include:
Unremedied crying. Unexplained fussiness and unusual sleep patterns can signal a possible spinal misalignment. In fact, studies have show chiropractic care to be beneficial for children with colic.
Head holding. While many children hold their heads in particular ways based on their level of comfort or preference, in some cases it can be due to a subluxation. This kind of behavior can be one way to cope or compensate with pain or discomfort.
Earaches. It is not uncommon for children with subluxations to suffer chronic earaches. If your child is constantly enduring earaches, tugging their lobes or rubbing their ears, consider chiropractic care. Caring for a misalignment will fix the true source of the issue instead of temporarily remedying ear pain with antibiotics.
Weakened immune system. If you find your child is commonly sick, a subluxation could be to blame. These misalignments impact your child’s nervous system, leading to a weakened immune system. By correcting a subluxation, your child will overall benefit.
Leg cramps. While “Charlie horses” are considered common for growing children, pain associated with growth spurts is not necessarily normal. In fact, it can be caused by a spinal misalignment or undetected issues such as unbalanced hips.
There’s no need to worry — healing subluxations in children is different than adults. Chiropractic techniques are adjusted to your child’s size and age, allowing them to receive delicate, specialized adjustments. If you suspect your child’s spine is misaligned or something just isn’t right, give us a call on [phone-no]. Butler Family Health Center is dedicated to your family’s lifelong health.