When should I take my child to a Doctor of Chiropractic?
WHEN you want your child to have all the benefits of a conservative, drugless approach to health care. Your child's first visit to the Doctor of Chiropractic can be a pleasant experience, one without painful injections and procedures, but with plenty of nurturing. A Doctor of Chiropractic should examine your child during that all-important first year of life when spinal trauma can occur during birth as well as from tumbles while learning to sit up or walk.
Improper lifting and carrying of your child can also contribute to spinal stress. Your child's spine grows almost 50% in length during that first year (the equivalent of a six-footer growing to nine feet in just 12 months!) It's this kind of tremendous growth and developmental changes which make a complete chiropractic examination so important in the early stages of your child's life.
WHEN you want to give your child a head start in good health. Doctors of Chiropractic believe it's much more important to prevent diseases than wait till some illness occurs. Through regular adjustments, counseling on proper diet, exercise and posture, the Doctor of Chiropractic can help you raise a child whose body is structurally and functionally sound. Your child will also learn good health habits at an early age which can be very beneficial to him or her as an adult.
WHEN your child takes a fall. Youngsters take numerous tumbles while learning to walk, riding a bike, or even while jumping or running around. But after their tears have dried, underlying injuries could go undetected--such as a misaligned vertebra during the spine's most formative period.
Regular spinal exams by the Doctor of Chiropractic can provide corrective and preventive care for your son or daughter and peace of mind for you.
WHEN your child takes part in athletic activities. The "sack" of a young quarterback could twist a young spine. A softball pitcher could throw a vertebra out of alignment. Doctors of Chiropractic can do more than correct these problems. They can also help improve performance on and off the field by helping the body function at its optimum level, naturally without stress and without drugs.
How safe is chiropractic for my child?
Chiropractic is one of the safest forms of health care. A baby's spine is very supple during the first few months of life and the Doctor of Chiropractic applies only a slight pressure to make spinal adjustments. Under normal circumstances, chiropractic adjustments are painless and will not hurt your child. Chiropractors do not use drugs which sometimes cause more harmful side effects than the progression of the disease itself. Drugs can also create the potential for addiction; even in young children. The Doctor of Chiropractic does not perform any invasive procedures (such as surgery) which sometimes can have irreversible side effects. These are some of the reasons why malpractice insurance rates for chiropractors are only a fraction of what medical physicians pay and why more than 30 million Americans choose chiropractic care for their children and themselves.
How effective is chiropractic care for children?
Doctors of Chiropractic have been providing safe and effective care for children for nearly 100 years. There are several published studies conducted by researchers in Germany, Australia, Denmark and the United States which confirm the effectiveness of chiropractic for a variety of childhood illnesses. This body of scientific evidence is growing every day.
What if my child has a health problem that doesn't respond to chiropractic care?
Doctors of Chiropractic are trained to recognize complex health problems. Their primary obligation is the welfare of the child. When they reach their limits of skill and authority, the International Chiropractors Association's position is that "doctors in all fields of practice are ethically and morally bound to make patient referrals to practitioners in other fields of healing when such referrals are necessary to provide the highest quality of patient care."
There are so many different health care specialists today. Who is really responsible for the health of my children?
You are. As a parent, you must take responsibility for your child's health and use your best judgment as to what is most appropriate for your child. Fortunately, there are some outstanding primary health care providers to help you make your decisions, including your Doctor of Chiropractic, pediatrician and dentist. These professionals can make up your child's personal health care team.
What if my child has a high fever, severe pain or other serious medical problem?
Take your child immediately to the nearest emergency medical facility. When your child's condition has stabilized, then call on any of your child's health care team for help and advice. It's essential that when an emergency arises, you or anyone else responsible for your children know where to go and whom to call. Standing up straight is important for everyone, but at no time is it more crucial to develop the habits of good posture than in childhood. Many adults with chronic back pain can trace the problem to years of bad posture habits or injuries in childhood. Because they are growing and more active, children may be at even more risk for injury to the back and spine. According to studies, there is a significantly high risk associated with football, trampolining and gymnastics. More than 1/3 of all high school football players sustain some type of injury. As a parent, seek professional help for children in the event of even a minor sports injury. Parents should also be aware that babies who are not strapped into an auto safety seat run the risk of injury and even death in the event of a quick stop or an accident.