NEWBORNS NEED CHIROPRACTIC!
Often, the first subluxation occurs during the birth process. Even during a normal, natural birth, an enormous amount of pressure is put on the infant’s head and spine. Added interventions, such as pulling, twisting, forceps, and suction, all cause further stress on the baby’s delicate spine, and often result in baby’s first misalignments.
In a study of 1250 newborn babies it was demonstrated that only 10% have a healthy, freely-movable cranial mechanism, in other words, all of the bones of the head are in correct relationship and moving as they should. Only 10% have visible disturbance in the cranial mechanism. The remaining 80% have minor difficulties that can only be detected by those specifically trained to detect subluxations, such as a chiropractor.
These subluxations that occur in infancy continue to affect the spine’s development and can lead to degeneration throughout their childhood and adult life. As a child develops and becomes more active, further misalignments can result from normal play, bumps and falls.
SUPPORTING HEALTHY DEVELOPMENT
There are six crucial times in a baby’s first year when spinal examinations are especially important:
- After the birth process
- When the baby starts to hold his/her head up
- When the baby sits up
- When the baby starts to crawl
- When the baby starts to stand
- When the baby starts to walk
A child’s spine grows 50% in the first year of life! At no other time does this growth happen so rapidly, which is why it is so important that your baby is in proper alignment, ensuring proper symmetrical growth. Making sure your child develops with the proper spinal curves will allow for optimal movement, balance, upright posture, protection, and shock absorption. Just as you would have your child’s teeth cleaned and eyes checked, it is important for your child to have regular chiropractic adjustments throughout their development.
Colic is a condition in young infants characterized by an unusual amount of crying. When they cry, they may draw their arms and legs toward their bodies as though they are in pain and may even turn bright red. Colic usually appears between the 3rd and 6th week after birth and is typically resolved by the time they are 3 months old. Although no one is certain what causes colic, there are several things that likely contribute, such as an immature and irritated nervous system, food sensitivities and gastrointestinal upset.
The theory that an irritated spine may contribute to colic is supported by the frequent improvement in symptoms with gentle chiropractic adjustments. Because the birthing process is very stressful on the neck of a newborn, it is very common for there to be several subluxations in the neck and back that can irritate the tiny and delicate nervous system. It has also been observed that babies with colic seem to need more attention and are more sensitive to the things around them than other babies - again indicating that there are some neurological differences.
Both the mother's and the baby's diet can be huge factors in the development of colic. One of the biggest offenders is cow's milk. Babies should not have cow's milk, or dairy in any form for that matter, until they are at least two or three years old. Cow's milk contains the sugar lactose which many newborn babies cannot digest very well, not to mention that cow's milk contains many proteins that are not good for an infant's digestive system.
Another potential dietary contributor to colic is the mother's diet while breastfeeding. Women who breast feed should stay away from spicy foods, alcohol and tobacco, as well as to avoid eating too much of any one food. A semi-bland, high-protein diet that excludes dairy is probably best - at least during the first three or four months of breastfeeding.
If your baby suffers from colic, there are a few things that you can do to help:
- Seek regular chiropractic care, especially during the first four months.
- Place a warm water bottle on your baby's stomach.
- Rock your baby in a rocking chair or cradle.
- Give your baby a warm bath.
- Gently rub your baby's stomach.
- Go for a drive with your baby in the car seat.
- Feed your baby more often with less food at each feeding.
- If you feed your baby formula, avoid soy or dairy-based formulas.
Other symptoms that your newborn may experience include:
- Latching issues
- Poor sleep
- Torticollis (Inability to turn head both directions)
- Asymmetric crawling
- Eczema and rashes
If you don’t see a symptom listed or would like more information on any of these symptoms, please reach out to us!