The Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published a case study on July 18, 2016, documenting the improvement of otitis media and sleep problems in a baby girl through chiropractic care. Otitis media, more commonly known as ear infections, is any inflammation of the middle ear regardless if it is caused by an infection.
The authors of the study begin by noting how common and trying re-occurring ear infections can be. “Frustration at reoccurring ear infections is one reason some parents are driven to seek ‘alternative’ treatments for their children. This frustration is well warranted, considering two out of three children will be medically diagnosed with otitis media in their first three years of life.”
Otitis media can affect any age group but is most prevalent in infants and children. It is estimated that by age four, 80% of children will have suffered a bout of otitis media. The rate of this problem has increased as the study reports that between 1975 and 1990, there was a 150% increase in the number of children in the United States who are diagnosed with otitis media. Common symptoms of otitis media include ear pain, difficulty sleeping, excessive crying, increased irritability, difficulty hearing or responding to sounds, loss of balance, fever, draining from ear, headaches, and loss of appetite.
In this case, a mother of a 2-year-old girl brought her daughter into the chiropractor. She was looking for help with her daughter’s re-occurring ear infections in the hopes of avoiding having tubes put into the baby’s ears, which had been recommended by her pediatrician. She was also looking for an alternative to the ongoing rounds of antibiotics her daughter had been given.
A chiropractic examination, including palpation, spinal heat readings and postural analysis were performed to determine the presence of subluxations that could be related to the baby girl’s problem. The presence of subluxation was determined, and care was begun in the form of specific adjustments appropriate for the age and size of the baby.
After one month of care, a re-assessment was performed which reported that the girl had been able to sleep through the night and had not had any ear infections since starting chiropractic. After about five months under chiropractic care, the study reports that the girl had not had any ear infections and had not needed any antibiotics since the beginning of care.
In their conclusion, the study authors describe how chiropractic can help in otitis media cases such as this. “Chiropractic exam found subluxations at multiple levels, which were addressed in the following weeks and months of care. Through removing these subluxations, the doctor of chiropractic removed the nerve interference and allowed the patient’s body to heal.” Based on the results of this and other studies the authors recommended “…chiropractic treatment is a better option for care of concurrent subluxation and otitis media than traditional allopathic care, which relies heavily on antibiotic treatment.”