By now your children have started to develop a routine. They have started school and are being exposed to many new things. While they are experiencing new pressures such as school, social engagement, and sports it is very important to be on the look out for any changes in your child’s behavior.
Although chiropractors don't directly treat ADHD, there are several things that your chiropractor can do to help eliminate things that stress a child's nervous system.
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a relatively common condition that tends to emerge in children during their early school years. The most common signs of ADHD are:
- Impulsive Behavior
- Difficulty Concentrating
It is estimated that between three and five percent of children have ADHD - approximately two million children in the United States - and is much more common in boys than girls. This means that in a classroom of 25 to 30 children, it is likely that at least one will have ADHD. However, because many normal children may show some of these same behaviors as well, it is important that a child receive a thorough examination and appropriate diagnosis before any treatment is considered.
It is not entirely certain what causes ADHD, but the current thought is that it is a combination of an overactive nervous system, coupled with a decrease in the brain's ability to filter out extraneous sights, sounds, thoughts and emotions. Although chiropractors don't directly treat ADHD, there are a number of things that your chiropractor can do to help eliminate things that stress a child's nervous system, such as:
- Remove spinal subluxations that irritate the nervous system
- Suggest dietary changes to avoid common problem foods
- Test for allergies that may be stressing the nervous system
- Suggest changes to the home to help reduce exposure to toxic chemicals
The most common medical treatment is the use of the drug methylphenidate, also known as Ritalin. Ritalin is a stimulant drug that normally speeds up the activity of the nervous system. But for reasons that are not entirely clear, it tends to have a calming effect on those who suffer from ADHD; possibly by increasing the activity in the area of the brain responsible for filtering out extraneous sensation. The problem with taking Ritalin is that it does not do anything to resolve the cause of the ADHD, it only masks the symptoms. Continued use of Ritalin over long periods of time has also been shown to have detrimental effects on the brain itself. It is important as a parent to look at all treatment options before placing your child on Ritalin and chiropractic care is a great place to start.
Kids get hurt all the time. They're running, they're jumping, they're crashing into things. Kids want to have fun, and when they play, they play full-out. So, when kids play real sports, stuff happens. Whether your kid plays soccer, baseball, football, or studies karate, a broken bone, sprained ankle, or twisted knee is just the natural fallout of learning new skills and having a good time. The treatment for most childhood sports injuries is straightforward and standard. For strains and sprains that involve only mild to moderate swelling and pain, the time-honored RICE protocol is followed - rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Pediatric orthopedists get involved when the injury is more severe or when an arm or leg bone is broken. But there are other issues, and every parent needs to be aware of these possibilities. In one of the unusual chains of circumstances that make the practice of medicine and the practice of chiropractic so interesting, a physical trauma (like a sports injury) can reveal an underlying serious problem.
In other words, various disorders of bone may not show themselves in terms of symptoms until a physical trauma makes them apparent. Such problems include metabolic disorders or growth and development problems.
What would make a parent suspect such an issue? First, if the child's pain seems out-of-proportion to the degree of injury. A mild knee sprain - for example, caused by tripping over second base while trying to stretch a double into a triple - should not be causing significant pain. Also, mild-to-moderate injuries should not be warm to the touch. A parent can evaluate this. And, a child should not be running a fever after an activity-related injury. It would also be suspicious if the pain did not improve daily. For most injuries, pain that lingers beyond several days suggests an underlying problem. Children are resilient. Healthy kids heal quickly. They want to shrug off an injury, forget it happened, and get back to playing.
If your child isn't getting better in a few days, seems lethargic, or feels ill following an injury, warning bells should go off.
Your family chiropractor is familiar with all such conditions and scenarios. He or she is always alert to unusual situations and will recommend the appropriate steps to take, including a complete physical and x-ray examination. If necessary, your chiropractor will be able to recommend appropriate specialists for follow-up.
These more serious problems are uncommon. And, of course, well-informed parents help their kids grow up healthy and strong.
Other symptoms your child may experience at this stage:
- Growing Pains
- Frequent stomach aches
- Respiratory infections
- Poor concentration
- Lack of balance & coordination
If you don’t see a symptom listed or would like more information on any of these symptoms, please reach out to us!