Ask any parent and they will tell you – nothing is more important than the health of their children. As a parent myself I can tell you that one of my highest values is giving my children the opportunity to grow up safe and healthy and without drugs and surgery except in unavoidable circumstances. This is exactly what chiropractic care can give to your children.
The Pediatric Spine and Vertebral Subluxation Complex
Your child’s spine and nerve system are subject to stresses from day one; actually from before day one (in the womb)! Very often the birth process inadvertently causes the first spinal misalignments, known as vertebral subluxations, which can affect your child’s development and future health. In order for your child’s spine and nerve system to develop healthy, vertebral alignment must be normal, especially in the upper neck. Research has shown that upper neck vertebral subluxation in newborns and infants is a risk factor for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), and can also contribute to lowered resistance to ear, nose and throat infections. It’s very important to realize that your child’s spine grows almost 50% in length during their first year of life (the equivalent of a six-footer growing to nine feet in just twelve months!). Vertebral subluxations that are not corrected in these early stages can lead to the development of abnormal spinal curvatures (scoliosis). The good news is that the relative flexibility of infant and child spines allows their vertebral subluxations to be corrected with light gentle touch or pressure. As a parent myself I always put my kids and my pediatric patients’ comfort first and will never force your child to receive an adjustment if they are not comfortable. Part of the process of your child getting used to chiropractic care is to expose them to me, the office, to you getting adjusted, as well as allowing them to hang out in the adjusting area and play with the toys as they learn that it is a safe place.
When should my child’s spine get checked?
You should have your child’s spine checked by a chiropractor as soon as possible after birth to allow for correction of any birth induced vertebral subluxations. I recommend babies in the first year of life to be checked for vertebral subluxation about once per month assuming there are no health issues. From ages 2 onward, I recommend kids get checked about every week which is exactly the schedule that my kids follow. This is because there are many childhood events that happen regularly that can cause vertebral subluxation including:
– falls while infants are learning to walk
– stresses from everyday activities such as running, jumping from heights, wrestling with siblings, pressure to perform in school etc.
– spinal shifts from sports such as hockey, soccer, martial arts etc. Your child may not be in pain after sliding into the boards on the ice but such an event can easily shift a vertebrae out of place leading not only to future health problems but also affecting their ability to perform on and off the field
– postural issues including sitting in school, forward slumped posture while using smart phones, ipads, computers, TV watching, texting, playing a musical instrument etc.
The ideal situation is for your child to have the opportunity to grow up free from the damaging effects of vertebral subluxation, thereby completely avoiding problems that are epidemic in children and adults today such as headaches, digestive issues, weak immune response (frequent colds/flu), asthma and back/neck pain. Living with a healthy nerve system through chiropractic care is for the entire family. What are you waiting for? If you haven’t had your kids or grandkids spines checked make their appointment today!