Chiropractic Care For Kids
I am often asked if chiropractic care is safe for children. For some, the ‘cracking’ noise is intimidating, and they worry about the effect on small spines. Other people reason that kids don’t get back pain, and therefore don’t need a chiropractor. The truth is that children have developing bodies, and while they may not typically suffer from the aches and pains of adulthood, they are susceptible to injuries and pains, which warrant attention.
A chiropractor is trained to diagnose and treat musculoskeletal conditions in adults and children.
There are many ways in which children will injure themself. The obvious way is from falls – onto bottoms while learning to walk, or off of bike while mastering wheelies. As sports and hobbies become more competitive, we see injuries in younger children from dance or hockey – most commonly knee problems or low back pain. More subtle problems are postural problems – when children sit all day in school, bad habits can develop, and kids are not immune to the effects of poor posture.
The reality is that children have complicated bodies just like adults, and their imbalances and injuries deserve to be treated just the same.
We think of childhood as care-free and generally pain-free, bumps and boo-boos aside. But the reality is that children have complicated bodies just like adults, and their imbalances and injuries deserve to be treated just the same. In fact I propose that it is more important to address a child’s complaint – correcting problems early can prevent chronic issues in adulthood.
What does a chiropractor do for children?
Chiropractic treatment for children is conservative. Adjustments are small and very gentle, and are adapted to the child. An adjustment on a 3 year old may look like a series of specific and gentle ‘pokes’, whereas a 12 year old is more likely to tolerate a smaller version of an adult treatment – with cracking noises and all. Kids usually respond by laughing – the noises are funny, and it feels good! Other treatments on children may use adjusting devices to deliver a small impulse, as well as stretches and exercises.
Chiropractic treatment for children is conservative. Adjustments are small and very gentle, and are adapted to the child.
When a parent brings their child to me, I assess them the same way I would any patient. I want to understand their complaint as well as their current health status. I examine their posture, assess any imbalances, diagnose the problem and treat it. And just like any other patient, I modify the treatment according to their needs –I wouldn’t use full force on a geriatric spine any more than I would on a pediatric spine. But little bodies deserve care too!
Read more on chiropractic care for children with scoliosis.