Dr. Elisa Petricca recently joined Oaks ’n Acorns as a guest speaker for a special edition workshop on Infant Chiropractic! She discussed some common concerns that parents may notice in their little ones and how Chiropractic care can help!
Here is a summary of the workshop if you missed it 🙂
Why bring your baby to a Chiropractor?
Being born is a big job! During the birth process and delivery, a baby’s body and nervous system undergoes stress and trauma. A baby goes through much exertion when travelling through the birth canal. With C-section deliveries, there may be other issues due to the time spent upside down in the uterus (for example, hip or shoulder problems).
What are the most common paediatric conditions treated by Chiropractors?
- Difficulty Breastfeeding: Issues with latching or maintaining a latch could be a results of baby feeling pain or discomfort with the feeding position. This may be a result of jaw or neck tension, which Chiropractic care can help to alleviate.
- Head Tilt (Torticollis): Many patients report noticing that their baby tends to look more to one side than the other. Or tends to prefer feeding more on one side. This preference typically indicates that baby has tight neck muscles or restricted joints in their neck. In this situation, Chiropractic care can help to loosen any neck tension and help encourage proper range of motion in the neck.
- Sleeping issues: Many times pain or discomfort in the spine can cause babies to be quite uncomfortable and sleep can become interrupted. Chiropractic care can help to find these areas of restriction and help ease this discomfort.
Other common paediatric symptoms or conditions include:
- Colic (which is defined at crying for more than 3 hours a day, for more than 3 days a week, for at least 3 weeks). It typically starts between the 3rd and 6th week after birth and ends by the time baby is 3 or 4 months.
- Digestive issues
- Gassy babies
- Crawling and walking issues
If babe is doing great, check ups at developmental milestones are encouraged!
Is Chiropractic care safe for infants and children?
Chiropractic care/adjustments for infants are very gentle and safe. Assessing and treating an infant is very different from assessing and treating an adult. There is no audible sound required to adjust an infant. For babes, a gentle pressure hold is used (the amount of pressure you would put on a ripe tomato or the amount of pressure you would place on your eyelid). Maintaining this gentle pressure for several seconds helps to facilitate proper alignment and remove any restrictions found in the joints.
What can I expect during a paediatric Chiropractic visit?
During the first visit we will go through a detailed health history and physical exam to get a detailed picture of the type of pregnancy, birth and delivery you and baby have undergone. We will then follow up with a physical assessment, which may include checking baby’s primitive reflexes, movement of their spine and limbs, and observing any asymmetries or other notable findings such as extreme fussiness, head rotations, etc. We will discuss how Chiropractic care can help to restore proper function of the nervous system by alleviating any restrictions in the spine and allowing the body to work and function at its best. Home care recommendations may also be given as well. During the infant assessment and treatment, we may have baby lying on their backs or bellies to assess different areas of the body. If it works better for you and babe, we can also assess and treat with baby in mum’s arms or on mum’s belly.
At what age can I bring my child in to get checked by a Chiropractor?
Your child is never to young to have their spine assessed. As mentioned before, even a natural, intervention-free vaginal birth places stress on an infant’s body. Follow up visits during major millstones – like starting to sit, crawl and walk are recommended to ensure there is nothing hindering baby from achieving their full potential.
Dr. Elisa Petricca would be very pleased to answer any questions you have and welcomes consultations!