Have you ever considered chiropractic care for your newborn or child?
Loren Eisenlohr, Marketing Director for West Michigan Woman recently shared her experience of taking her son to see a chiropractor for an adjustment.
"I've been going to a chiropractor for years and I notice significant improvements in my health, energy and overall function when I am adjusted regularly," Eisenlohr said. "Because of this, I'm a huge advocate for chiropractic care. When my son was born via a traumatic c-section, my chiropractor at the time recommended I bring him in to get aligned."
While apprehensive, Eisenlohr took her son in for an adjustment at four weeks old.
"I held him the entire time as my chiropractor gently worked his way down his neck and spine," Eisenlohr explained. "With light pressure, my son's spine was manipulated. I noticed improvements in my son's demeanor right away. He seemed more comfortable, was less fussy and the stuffiness in his nose subsided."
She took her son in for a few more adjustments in the following months.
"I do believe it helped his overall function, and as a woman who deals with scoliosis, I am incredibly wary of my son's spine development," Eisenlohr said. "As he becomes more active, I will continue to have his spine checked. Had I been adjusted early in life, my spine may have developed more properly, causing less discomfort today."
Dr. Steve Mikulak, Chiropractor and Owner of Precision Chiropractic in Rockford, says it's important to realize that chiropractic is not a treatment for specific conditions that a child or newborn may have. However, he says seeing a pediatric trained chiropractor can offer many benefits for kids and parents alike, such as lessened tension, improved processing and physiologic activity, changes in sleep and helping the body heal naturally.
"Chiropractic carries real power in its global effect on the nervous system, which balances every other system—emotions, gut, physiology and neurology within the body," said Dr. Mikulak. "What better time to make sure the nervous system is functioning optimally than from the very start of their newborn life?"
Though some parents might be interested in pediatric chiropractic care, they may not be sure what to expect. Dr. Mikulak shared some insight on what an appointment might look like.
"Pediatric trained chiropractors often utilize instrumentation during exams to check various parts of the child's neuro-spinal system for interference or nerve disturbances that may be affecting one or more of the body's systems and creating a potential issue, then recommend a course of action to address the areas of concern," he said. "Infant and toddler adjustments are very gentle. Oftentimes, babies will sleep right through them. There is no 'cracking' of anything, as their little spinal joints have not fully formed yet."
Dr. Mikulak emphasizes the big idea is that life is full of various stressors, thoughts and traumas that can all start from birth.
"Our bodies have an amazing, innate ability to adapt and react to those stressors and heal," he explained, noting however that sometimes stress can outweigh someone's ability to adapt accordingly and that's when things can start to break down. "Without question, the birth process can be traumatic for everyone involved, especially for a newborn and the mother. Checking the neuro-spinal system of that new life and the people supporting it—and adjusting if necessary—is a great way to make sure everyone has their best chance at living a healthy, adaptive life."
Whatever your choice, be sure to consult with your pediatrician to find out what is suitable for your child or newborn.
Written by Sarah Suydam, Managing Editor for West Michigan Woman.
This article originally appeared in the Aug/Sept 2021 issue of West Michigan Woman.