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Paediatric Chiropractic Care

Updated: Aug 2, 2022

The benefits of chiropractic care in adults are already well known, but did you know that chiropractic can lead to better health and development in children from infants to tweens.

A child’s body goes through a lot of what could even be described as trauma as it develops. From entering the world via a natural delivery or caesarean section, attempting to meet milestones and growth spurts. Children also have their fair share of falls while learning to crawl and walk, and experience bodily stress when engaging in sports and other physical activities. These factors all influence a child’s health and future development as their musculoskeletal system is put under pressure and results in misalignments.

Paediatric chiropractic care is offered at my Ballito practice, Dr Kate Dinkelmann Chiropractic. While it is easy to think of children as just small adults, their musculoskeletal system is complex and ever-changing! Paediatric chiropractic uses different techniques to optimise the child's growing bodies and promote rest and development.

Many studies have shown chiropractic to be beneficial in assisting babies meeting milestones. A study by Bernard and Alcantara (2012) followed the treatment of an 11 month old “bottom shuffler” who was unable to cross-crawl. Misalignments were found in the child’s cervical spine and sacroiliac joints. The mother reported that within hours of the treatment the child began crawling on all fours.

Quezada and Hann (2012) described the treatment of an 8 month old patient who presented unable to sit supported, difficulty holding their head up, difficulty with tummy-time and a very uncoordinated stomach crawl. Chiropractic manipulation combined with prescribed home exercises over the next month resulted in the child meeting normal milestones, and 7 months later it was noted that the child was ahead of expected development.

Difficulty with breastfeeding (for both mom and child) is a common presentation at my practice. Stewart (2012) examined the effects of paediatric chiropractic on infant breastfeeding difficulties. 19 cases were examined and improvements in breastfeeding was found in every infant. The most significant issues identified and resolved were improved attachment to the breast, reduced extension and side shaking once attached, reduced overall stress of feeding, reduced pain when feeding, and side preference.

Another common complaint is colic. Miller, Newell and Bolton (2012) examined the effect of chiropractic treatments on colic in a single blinded trial and found that parents reported unbiased significantly reduced crying in their babies following treatment.

Many similar cases have presented to the practice but we are not limited to what was discussed above. I have had great success in identifying and treating scoliosis, young sporting injuries and reflux. These topics will be discussed further in future blogs and social media posts.

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