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Why does my child need Chiropractic Care?

   You’ll probably never see your five or six-year-old bend
over to pick up a toy and freeze in pain saying, “Oh, my
back went out again.” Spinal degenerations and vertebral
subluxations that cause that kind of pain will generally not
appear in children – but it started there.

Birth Trauma
   Natural childbirth has come to mean many different things,
but for the purpose of this article let’s keep it simple and
say that it is a drug-free, vaginal delivery. Even with no
pitocin, no epidural, the mother walking regularly to help
the contractions, and no extraction methods being used,
childbirth causes stress to a still developing spine.
   Add to this the improper lifting of the child out of a car seat
or during a diaper changing; and minor spinal traumas are
occurring that affect the spine and nervous system causing
common newborn health complaints:

  •  Colic
  •  Unexplained crying
  • Poor appetite
  • Earaches or ear infections
  • Colds
  • Allergic reactions

Even a minor spinal trauma will affect the nervous system
and interfere with your child’s normal healthy function.

Learning to Walk
   When a child first learns to stand up they tend to use a
coffee table, a couch, mom or dad’s fingers, whatever is in
reach to pull themselves to their feet. Once they’re up
there, how do they get down? That’s right; they plop down
onto their bottom and crawl away.
   When they’re starting to take their first few venturous steps
toward walking they stand next to the table or couch,
wobble back and forth a little bit, take one or two hesitant
steps toward the middle of the room and, once again, plop
onto their bottom. In some instances, the child doesn’t
make it far enough away from the table or chair and hits
their head on furniture.
   These constant and repeated jars to the spine will not in
themselves cause a major spinal injury, but as they
accumulate repetitive stress injuries do occur.

Exploring Their Surroundings
   During the first few years of life, children will develop
from helpless infants into fearless adventurers. Bumps
and falls naturally come with your child’s desire to learn
everything about the world around them in the quickest
amount of time possible, but these bumps and falls will
cause trauma to the spine. When spinal bones lose
their normal position or ability to move during this stage
of tremendous physical growth, possible permanent
deformities can occur. Left uncorrected, these small
cumulative traumas can have far-reaching effects.
   While a Doctor of Chiropractic doesn’t treat or cure
illnesses, many common childhood disorders may be
the result of nervous system interference or malfunction
caused by spine related problems, such as:

  •  Hyperactivity
  • Learning disorders
  • Bedwetting
  • Allergies
  • Asthma

This is just the tip of the iceberg, but appropriate
Chiropractic care can help locate and correct these
problems and restore normal spinal and nervous
system function.

The Vertebral Subluxation Complex
   As you can see, our children bump and jar their spine
constantly in the first five years of life, and after that
their normal everyday activities can cause the
vertebrae that protect the spine to lose their normal
motion or position. Each of these spinal traumas cause
lasting effects: delicate nerve tissue can be damaged
resulting in interference with the brain’s ability to send
nerve impulses to organs, tissues and muscles; discs,
blood vessels and other soft tissues can swell and
become inflamed; the body may respond with bone spurs
and other abnormal bone growth; and various systems
through the body may malfunction.
   In each of these examples, pain or other obvious
symptoms may not be present at the time, yet optimum
health and well-being have been compromised.

Your Child’s Developing Spine
   There are three windows of time in which your child’s
spine will go through major stages of development. The
first of these is birth through age five. This is definitely the
most critical time since it is during this period that the
child also has the most minor traumas and repetitive
stress injuries to the spine.
   The second window of development is five years to ten
years of age. During this time your child will begin school
and spend recess climbing on monkey bars, sliding down
slides, playing organized sports and generally leaving
themselves open to repeated falls and tumbles resulting
in their own spinal injuries.
   Finally, at age ten to fifteen-years-old, your child’s spine
will go through its last stage of development. During this
final stage, your child’s spinal growth will be greatly
affected by most if not all of the following:

  • Improper backpack loading and carrying
  • Poor posture
  • An inactive or sedentary lifestyle
  • Repetitive sports movements
  • Typical sports injuries

             o Being hit in the head with a ball
             o Tackled on the field
             o Falling off a skateboard or rollerblades

It may be possible that you missed the first window of
opportunity for care, but it’s not too late; your child or
teenager can benefit from Chiropractic care.

The Benefits of Chiropractic Care
   Even as the public is becoming more aware of the
benefit of early detection and care of the Vertebral
Subluxation Complex, the odds are that you were
looking for pain relief for yourself as an adult when
you first went to see your Family Wellness
Chiropractor. During your initial examination it’s
possible that a certain Phase of Degeneration was
detected. If you were informed that you are at Phase
1 then the original damage to your spine was likely
ten to twenty years ago. If you were at Phase 2, the
original damage to your spine was probably about
twenty to forty years ago.
   Basically, if you first saw your Chiropractor when you
were in your late twenties and you’re at a Phase 1 of
degeneration, then the damage to your spine
originated when you were a child. So, the most
obvious answer to the question of why your child may
need Chiropractic care is: avoid having your child
suffer the same pain that first brought you in to see a
Chiropractor. Spinal problems that go undetected or
neglected in children become more serious problems
as adults.

In Summary
   As a Chiropractic patient you’re already aware of the
benefits of Chiropractic care. You’ve experienced for
yourself the relief that comes from having a properly
aligned spine. Give your child the opportunity that
you weren’t given: to benefit from the body’s innate
ability to heal itself and grow up with a healthy spine
and nervous system.

In Health,

~Dr. Chelsa


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