Hey everyone! This is Dr. Emily Hurley Baumann, and today I wanted to share about my first adjustment!
As many of you know, my mom Dr. Christine Hurley was a chiropractor. I am proud to know that she adjusted me on the very day that I was born.
It is surprising to most people to learn that Chiropractic is for babies too! The birth process can put a lot of pressure on the baby’s head, neck, and spine. Checking baby’s spine, especially the first vertebrae at the top of the neck named the Atlas, is an amazing gift to give a brand new human so that they can begin life with a balanced spine and nervous system! I dream of a world where everyone begins life with regular chiropractic check ups, as common as check ups with the pediatrician.
There are many benefits of Chiropractic for babies. Chiropractic doesn’t treat or seek to cure any specific condition. My goal as a Chiropractor is to find a bone that may be “stuck”, restricted or misaligned and restore motion and balance. When we balance the spine, the nervous system can function better, and the body can do amazing things to heal itself! These are a few common issues that typically improve after Chiropractic adjustments:
- Constipation. The digestive system is powered by the nervous system! The nerves that run the stomach and intestines come from the lower spine. An adjustment to the low back can reset those nerves and get baby pooping again! I am also trained in a technique called Logan Basic. This gentle technique works on a ligament of the sacrum where there are many parasympathetic ganglia, also known as the “rest and digest” part of the nervous system. When we activate that rest and digest part of the nervous system, baby’s often poop within a few hours!
- Breastfeeding. Many moms have the goal to breastfeed and are ultimately unable to achieve that goal. There are many different aspects to troubleshoot when there are breastfeeding issues. A few of these concerns can be addressed with an adjustment, especially to the upper cervical spine (remember the all important Atlas I mentioned earlier?), TMJ, palate and cranials. When we are able to balance out the baby’s head, neck, and jaw the baby can usually achieve a better latch. I also work with a lactation specialist, Nicolle Fletcher. For my patients that are also clients of hers, we have been able to work together to help moms and babies nurse like champs! She is able to assist with the mom’s hold and correcting the baby’s latch, while I can adjust any restrictions that are making it difficult for the baby to latch or suck.
- Plagiocephaly. This means flattening of the head, which is very common in babies. Just because it is common does not mean it is normal! Making sure the spine is balanced and bones of the skull are not restricted is key in normal development of head shape. Before getting a helmet for your little one, consider Chiropractic care with a doctor that is trained in cranial work!
- Parents typically notice their kids get sick less often when they are regularly adjusted. This is likely due to the relationship between the nervous system and immune system! Parents also have reported their babies even sleep better after adjustments!
Adjustments for babies are very gentle. There is no twisting or popping. We use a light touch with our fingertips and use about as much pressure as you use to check the ripeness of a tomato! I have even had newborns sleep through their adjustments before.
I am often asked, how soon do I recommend baby’s come in to be checked. The ideal situation would be to work on mom throughout the pregnancy (but that is a topic for another day!). I recommend to my moms that they come in for their own postpartum adjustment and also bring the baby for their exam at the one week mark. Some moms choose to come the same day as their one week pediatrician appointment while they are already out and about with the baby. I recommend this one week check up if all is well and there are no issues with baby’s health or with breastfeeding. If there are any concerns, they should bring the baby in right away and not wait for the one week appointment.
After their first check up, if there are no issues and the spine is balanced, I recommend check ups once a month. This is great for babies and children. I do not recommend waiting until there is an issue to bring the baby back! The beauty of chiropractic care is creating health. Imagine life for the next generation of people that grow up with balanced spines and optimal nervous system function!
Share this post with your friends with babies!