Is it Time Your Baby Saw a Chiropractor?

The above headline comes from a November 11, 2011 article in Essential Baby, an Australian publication that claims it is, “the largest online parenting community in Australia providing information and resources for conception, pregnancy, birth, baby, toddler, kids, parenting and women’s lifestyle.”

This article, written by Rebecca Martin starts off with her recalling the birth of her baby by saying, “After a long arduous labor requiring a suction cap to help my large first-born out, among the torrent of advice received was one unusual tidbit: ‘If he gets colicky, try taking him to a baby chiropractor’.”

Initially, Rebecca thought this advice was absurd, but when her colicky baby would not respond to every other remedy she tried, she started asking about a chiropractor for her baby. To her surprise she realized that many people were using chiropractors for their children. She reported, “Everyone, it seems, was doing it. All my more experienced mum-friends had one they could recommend. The child-health nurse, my GP and even the pediatrician who treated my son’s severe reflux, gave them the thumbs up.”

The article notes that when babies are adjusted there are no “bones cracked” as they called it. Many adjustments involve finger pressure on areas of the spine to have an effect on the nervous system. Dr Simon Floreani of the Chiropractors Association of Australia explained, “In the last decade there has been a lot more instrumentation used in the birth process, so babies get sprained and strained,” he says. “Chiropractic can help reverse the structural or mechanical injury of birth, and also help the nervous system to develop and construct normally. In infants, the biggest part the nervous system [affects] is sleeping, eating and pooing. Colic is a digestive thing, so if we can help ease the movement of milk through the bowel, we can help colic.”

The article also interviewed a chiropractic detractor who questioned research about chiropractic helping babies. To this Dr. Floreani responded with, “It’s difficult to get permission to do studies or trials on infants without getting caught up in a lot of ethics and issues.” He noted that medicine has tried to take the power away from mothers, and the best proof was that mothers are willing to pay for the care themselves. “Medicine can disempower you to say you know what’s right for your child. The fact that parents are paying out of their own pocket to [go to chiropractors] is more evidence than the best trials in the world.”

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