Most people are well aware of the benefits of chiropractic for adults. Spinal adjustments can relieve pain, stress, and tension throughout the entire body. However, most people may not know that chiropractic care can also be beneficial for children, including infants. A variety of infant problems, from colic to gas to constipation, can be safely and effectively treated by chiropractic spinal adjustment.
Why Do Infants Need Chiropractic Adjustments?
People may think that infant’s bodies are far too fragile for chiropractic adjustments. The truth is that proper adjustments, done with gentler force than would be used for adults, can be very effective, even for newborns. If an infant had a difficult delivery, such as breech or cesarean, a great deal of stress may have been placed on the spine due to contractions or being pulled out of the mother. This sort of stress can lead to common problems such as constipation.
In most cases, infant constipation is treated with medications. Most of these drugs have not been thoroughly tested for infants. Dr. Nathen Horst believes it makes more sense to avoid drugs whenever possible in favor of determining the cause of infant constipation. He believes that spinal stress from delivery can misalign the spine or damage the infant’s nervous system. Chiropractic adjustments can provide a gentle, natural way to correct for these problems.
What Does the Research Say?
A 2012 case report in the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal, & Family Health discussed the use of chiropractic treatments for a three-week-old male infant with constipation, irritability, and poor sleep as a result of gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERDS). The pediatrician first placed him on Gaviscon, a nonprescription medication for treating heartburn. When that did not work, the doctor prescribed Losec. However, the infant still suffered from constipation, irritability, and waking at night.
The mother took the infant for chiropractic treatment. She noted that he had a bowel movement within a day after the first treatment, as well as right after feedings. He also slept better at night and was much less irritable.
Another case study in the December 1994 issue of Chiropractic Pediatrics reported similar results from infant chiropractic for constipation. A six-month-old girl began having severe constipation when she was transitioned to solid foods. It was not unusual for her to go more than week between bowel movements, and she required emergency treatment. Within two weeks of the first two chiropractic treatments, she had regular bowel movements every two to three days. By the age of two years, she was having bowel movements every day.
In both case reports, the researchers suggested that there may be a link between spinal misalignment and constipation in infants. Further research is needed, but chiropractic adjustments appear to be an effective way to treat pediatric constipation.
Dr. Horst is dedicated to the gentle, natural healing art of chiropractic care for everyone. Even the very young can benefit from spinal adjustments to keep them healthy. In the long run, chiropractic adjustments provide a better solution for infant ailments than unproven medications or invasive procedures.
Contact Horst Chiropractic to schedule an appointment,