Pediatric chiropractic concerns the chiropractic care of infants and children.
Some women seek prenatal chiropractic care to cope with the pelvic and postural changes as well as the increased curve in the back due to abdominal protrusion. A misaligned pelvis may “reduce the amount of room available for the developing baby”, making it difficult for delivery. If a baby is posterior or breech, medical interventions, such as C-section may occur, despite a mother’s desire for a natural childbirth. Chiropractic can also potentially reduce labor time, ease nausea, and relieve the joint, back, and neck pain of pregnancy. A chiropractor, Larry Webster, D.C., “developed a specific chiropractic analysis and adjustment” in order to promote optimal fetal positioning, called “the Webster Technique”, and chiropractors may use this to help prevent breech presentation.1
A pediatric chiropractor (or baby chiropractor) may be sought to treat a variety of conditions. A clinical trial found that “spinal manipulation is effective in relieving infantile colic”, for example.2 The International Chiropractic Pediatric Organization (ICPA) seeks to promote public awareness about chiropractic care for infants, children, and pregnant women. They have a directory to search for providers.3 Even when there is not a problem, some parents bring their healthy children to see chiropractors. There are a variety of reasons for which parents seek chiropractic treatment, including encouraging “good neural plasticity (brain and nerve development), to improve immunity, to resolve colic and breastfeeding problems, to support “digestive strength”, to improve concentration, “to promote body balance”, to help resolve allergies, asthma, and bedwetting, and to improve poor posture.4
Are Chiropractors Safe?
In a 2011 literature review, Dr. MF Doyle found “no serious adverse events have been reported in the scientific literature since 1992”. Therefore pediatric chiropractic care is generally safe, with only about 1 out of every 100-200 children having mild irritability or soreness for less than a day after treatment. In fact, “up to 14 percent of all chiropractic visits were for pediatric patients”.5 The American Chiropractic Association believes that children could benefit from seeing a chiropractor. Children engage in physical activity, and they experience injuries, falls, and blows, as well as stiffness, soreness, neck and back pain. Chiropractors have gentle techniques that they can use with children.6 Some may use the Activator tool, for example, on pediatric and pregnant patients. They may even offer massage therapy in their offices. Chiropractors can also provide nutrition advice to their patients.7
Learn more about chiropractic care for children.