Infants, Babies, and Chiropractic
Infants Need Chiropractic
All infants need a healthy spinal column. All babies need to have their spines checked by a Doctor of Chiropractic for the presence of vertebral subluxations or spinal nerve stress. Why is this important? It's important because an unhealthy spine can interfere with the normal function of the nervous system and may cause serious health problems in infancy and later in life. With all you do for your newborn child, please ensure his or her spinal health with a chiropractic spinal check-up.
The birth process may be one of the most traumatic events of our lives. Even so-called "natural" birthing methods can stress a still developing spine. The resulting irritation to the nervous system can be the cause of many newborn health complaints. Colic, unexplained crying, poor appetite, breathing problems, and allergic reactions can often be traced to nervous system dysfunction caused by a malfunctioning spine.
Head support, followed by crawling, and a baby's first few steps should be followed by Chiropractic checkups. Regular spinal checkups are especially beneficial as head and natural spinal curves are established. The spinal malfunction from falling when learning to walk, can often be helped with Chiropractic care. If neglected, the bumps and falls during this period of rapid growth may lead to serious spinal deformities later in life. This can set the stage for scoliosis, "growing pains," and a weakened immune system response. Many spinal problems seen in adults begin in childhood. Proper spinal hygiene is an important key to better health. Do you know a child who could benefit from Chiropractic care?
Chiropractic adjusting techniques are modified to fit a child's size, weight, and unique spinal problem. Parents often report that their children seem healthier than other kids their age.
Health begins before birth
Children benefit from Chiropractic care before they are born, by having a mother who receives prenatal Chiropractic checkups. A healthy diet, proper exercise, a stress-free environment, and a Chiropractic lifestyle help prepare for a happy, healthy baby.
Infant Spinal Trauma
Many studies have shown that the majority of newborns have spinal nerve stress that is threatening their health and in some cases, their
lives! But how can that be? The answer will surprise you: spinal trauma! A newborn's spine traumatized? How?
The newborn that knew only the warmth, softness, darkness, quiet and comfort of the womb is suddenly exposed to a cold, noisy, hard, harsh, blinding world. Separated from mother, often dangled from its heels and struck on its rear, these procedures can cause permanent physical trauma and emotional scarring. As one expert has stated:
"The birth process, even under optimal controlled conditions, is potentially a traumatic, crippling event for the fetus. Mechanical stress imposed by obstetrical manipulation-even the application of standard orthodox procedures may prove intolerable to the fetus. The view has been expressed clinically that most signs of neonatal injury observed in the delivery room are neurological. . ."(1)
Why do they do that? Medical doctors are trained to intervene. As Robert Mendelsohn, M.D. one of America's leading pediatricians, says: "…
(Obstetricians) constantly interfere in a natural physiological process that they insist on treating as though it were a disease. In a shocking percentage of cases this medical interference with a normal bodily function adversely affects the physical or intellectual capacity of the child for the rest of his life. Sometimes it even ends that life before it really has a chance to begin.
"If you have your baby in a hospital, you will be exposed to an array of obstetrical hazards. . .Having your baby at home is less risky than going to the hospital because much of the most dangerous technology employed in hospitals is not available to doctors or mid-wives who deliver babies at home. Procedures such as ultrasound diagnosis, internal fetal monitoring, excessive use of sedatives, pain relievers and anesthetics, pitocin-induced labor, and the temptation to resort to delivery by caesarean section, are largely avoided when you play it safe and have your baby in your very own bed." (2)
Many studies have shown home birth to be safer for both mother and child. The following study conducted by Lewis E. Mehl, M.D., of the University of Wisconsin Infant Development Center reviewed 2,000 births, nearly half of which had taken place at home.
- There were 30 birth injuries among the hospital-born children and none among those born at home.
- Fifty-two of the babies born in the hospital required resuscitation versus only 14 of those born at home.
- Six hospital babies suffered neuro-logical damage compared to one born at home. (3)
- The best way to avoid hospital horror stories is to consider home birth as an alternative to hospital birth.
The Chiropractic Approach
Chiropractic is a health care system that removes distortions and stress from the spinal column and the nervous system to allow the body to work as naturally as possible. Chiropractic is founded on the premise that our bodies possess an inborn natural wisdom that works best without interference. This means delivering in the most natural position by which to give birth without drugs or intervention of any kind unless absolutely necessary. This means bonding and breastfeeding. This means birth without violence. For these reasons, you'll find natural childbirth, home birth, breastfeeding and similar practices very common among chiropractors' families.
In the German medical journal Manuelle Medizin the authors Gutmann and Fryman reported examining a random group of 1,250 babies 5 days after birth. 211 suffered from vomiting, hyperactivity and sleepless-ness. Manual examination revealed spinal abnormali-ties in 95% of this group. Spinal adjustment "frequently resulted in immediate quieting, cessation of crying, muscular relaxation and sleepiness".(4)
The authors noted that spinal nerve stress in the upper neck area causes "many clinical features from central motor impairment to lower resistance to infections-especially ear, nose and throat infections".(5) Over 1,000 infants with upper neck subluxations were examined.
One case history given was of a boy 18 months old who suffered from tonsillitis, frequent enteritis, therapy resistant conjunctivitis, frequent colds and earache and increasing sleeping problems. After the first spinal adjustment the child demanded to be put to bed and slept peacefully until morning. His health returned to normal.
According to the authors a spinal check up "...should be obligatory after every difficult birth' and if any spinal stress exists the area "should be.. specifically adjusted. . the success of adjustment overshadows every other type (of care)." (6)
Neurological Dysfunction And Crib Death
Various studies have confirmed that spinal damage in infants can cause disease and even death.(') Abraham Towbin, a Harvard University patholo-gist found evidence of spinal injury in many cases of unexplained crib deaths, hyaline membrane disease, pneumonia and respiratory depression. But there are others: ". . .there must exist a large number of in-stances with mild injury, with minimal neurologic symptoms, going unnoticed clinically or being relegated to the category of cerebral palsy."18) In 1984 the Academy for Research in the Chiropractic Sciences (ARCS) concluded an 18 month study on the relationship of crib death and spinal structure and found that babies that had died of crib death had abnormal spinal alignment in the upper neck area. (9)
Testing procedures are not refined enough to completely assess all the damage spinal nerve stress may cause to the baby. Gross learning and behavioral problems are more easily seen but the damage may at times be too subtle to be tested. Perhaps the loss of a few I.Q. points? Perhaps average rather than above average abilities? There can be rather small, yet significant differences between the average and exceptional child. Less oxygen at birth? A minor pull on the neck at delivery? A small spinal misalignment? Since we don't know let's play it safe and do our best to avoid dangerous procedures and promote natural, safer infant and newborn care.
Do all you can to give your baby the best possible chance to have a healthy life. That includes childbirth without violence, breastfeeding, and avoidance of drugs and medical procedures (except in emergencies).
We urge you to respect your child's natural healing mechanisms, as well as your own, and make sure you are both under chiropractic care. You have your baby's eyes checked, heart checked, hearing checked—why not include a chiropractic spinal check-up?
1. Towbin A, Latent Spinal Cord and Brain Stem Injury in Newborn Infants, Develop. Med, Child Neurol. 1969, 11, 54-68. 2. Mendelsohn H, How to Raise A Healthy Child. . .In Spite of Your Doctor, Ballantine Books, 1984. Chapter 4, pp.31-32. 3. "Statistical Outcomes Of Home Birth in the United States". Safe Alternative in Childbirth, by David Stewart, Ph.D. Published by NAPSAC, Marble Hill, MO 1976. 4. Gutman G, "Blocked Atlanta! Nerve Syndrome in Babies and Infants", Manuelle Medizin (1987) 25:5-10. 5. Ibid.
6. Ibid. 7. St. Louis Post Dispatch (AP) May 3rd, 1984. 8. Gilles et al, infantile Atlantooccipital Instability, Am J Dis Child 133:30-37, 1979 9. Towbin A, Latent Spinal Cord and Brain Stem Injury in Newborn Infants, Develop. Med. Child Neurol. 1969, 11, 54-68.
Copyright 1991 by Tedd Koren, DMC
Thanks to Dr. Carlomagno's nutritional regimentation program my son Seth who was diagnosed with A.D.D. Hyperactivity disorder is able to go back to elementary school with the other kids. I am really happy that he doesn't have to take medication like the M.D's recommended that made him like a zombie!
A.D. Software Designer
My 2 year old Beth saw Dr. Carlomagno with what began as acute ear infections. Dr Carlomagno's treatment was effective in reducing if not eliminating them completely. The M.D.'s tried to use antibiotics which caused a rash on her skin and this ultimately didn't work.- They wanted to put tubes into her eardrums to clear the infection but I felt this was absurd! Thank you so much for your wiser, more gentle approach to correcting the condition not symptom.
My preteen Ashton was complaining of back ache and I bought her to see Dr. Carlomagno. He determined that the root cause of her problem was that she was developing a slight case of scoliosis (from being right handed and playing tennis) or 8 degree left roto-scoliosis. The M.D.'s recommended bracing. Dr Carlomagno was able to prevent further progression of this functional condition and further enhance motion of the affected joints. He was able to retard future degeneration and progression of her spinal scoliosis by adjustments and exercises that stabalised her spine. Today as an adult she is an active participant in the sports world and lives a healthy life free of pain. She still goes for regular care 1 time per month for maintenance. Thanks for turning us on to this wonderful healing art called Chiropractic.