The two most common sensory system conditions that come through our office are:
ADHD is seen as a neurological disorder by the medical community. Pediatric chiropractic care is helpful to so many families who decide to use a non-drug approach to finding solutions to their child’s health.
Deemed miracles, but it makes sense that these children have an over stimulated nervous system.
Pediatric chiropractic is shown to allow the nervous system to relax. When this master control system is able to relax what might happen to your child’s body? It can finally grow, develop, and heal like it is meant to!
What is “ADHD”?
Parents, teachers, and doctors see classic signs that determine the diagnosis. Here are the most common signs:
- Inattention, hyperactivity and being easily distracted
- Difficulty concentrating and sitting still
- Inability to control impulsive thoughts and behaviors
- Easily distracted by noises and activities
- Always moving—fingers, hands, arms, feet or legs
What Can You Do?
Believe it or not, there is a lot that parents are able to do for their kids. Nutritional and lifestyle changes are a perfect place for families to start. We can look at your child’s environment and identify environmental factors that are more and more common these days. Whether your child is suffering from ADHD or not, these will help every child live a healthier happier life. Some examples:
- Remove food dyes, preservatives and additives from the diet.
- Focus on natural, organic foods grown without pesticides or herbicides.
- Determine if an allergy is involved such as dairy or gluten and eliminate it.
- Eliminate all sugars and artificial sweeteners (the use of stevia is seen as safe by my sources).
- Reduce the use of harsh chemical cleaning agents, detergents, fabric softeners and other household chemicals.
The “Common” Path
The artificial and most common approach to controlling symptoms of ADHD is to drug a child with regular doses of methylphenidate, a class 2 psychotropic drug. More commonly known as Ritalin®.
Ritalin® is a schedule II controlled substance related to, and producing similar effects as, amphetamines and cocaine. Many parents quickly look for other answers when it is explained that the side effects are serious, including personality changes and permanent changes to the brain. More and more are wisely turning to chiropractic.
A Better Approach With Pediatric Chiropractic
Hyperactivity is not the result of a Ritalin® shortage! It seems common sense when we realize that these kids have highly overstimulated nervous systems. Look at them and you can easily see it. When we find a lack of motion within the joints of the spine, more specifically the neck, it is a major contributor to this over stimulation almost every single time!
In fact, this link between the spine, brain stem dysfunction, and ADHD is common. An in depth pediatric chiropractic exam can reveal noticeable spinal distortion, even a reversal of the normal neck curve. With a series of safe and specific chiropractic adjustments to restore proper habits of releasing the tension in the nervous system, these issues often resolve.
Reach Out To Others
As parents, we will do anything to ensure our kids have the best chance to excel and live healthy happy lives. If your child is considered to have symptoms of ADHD we realize it puts stress on the lives of others, especially your direct family members. We want to help our community more than anything but are only able to if we meet these families and can educate them about their options. Before you or your friends submit to drug therapy, make an appointment for a pediatric chiropractic exam.
Autism/Sensory Processing Disorder
Sensory Struggles and Chiropractic Care
Do you see the stress your child lives with? If you had to guess, would you say their brain is ready to learn or is constantly running from overstimulation (stressed out)? Our goal is to calm your child’s brain down. Once your child’s brain is calmed down, how well will their brain be able to take in all of the therapies they are in? We see kids excel so often in our office it constantly amazes parents, educators, and professionals.
Pediatric Chiropractor is not something you hear every day. Back pain, headaches, and maybe a sports injury is usually what comes to mind. The public’s understanding of pediatric chiropractic as a foundation of health is steadily increasing, especially in kids!
Helping spectrum-related disorders are a passionate pursuit of our office. In regards to how chiropractic helps autism I think that is best left up to my mentor’s words. My mentor wrote out a general summary and made it available to the public!
So here goes… Warning – this is a very lengthy explanation, but if there is one thing I have learned in my years of helping parents whose children suffer with autism, it is that “no amount of information or help is too much” for their children. So hopefully, this helps…
How can Pediatric Chiropractic Care Help with Autism?
Well, as is the case with so many questions, the response to this one is going to be multi-faceted. However, it will also have one recurring theme… and that recurring theme will be our focus on the Central Nervous System.
Anyone who knows anything about autism knows that the nervous system is greatly affected in this disorder and the challenges this brings about are responsible for many of the issues seen in children with autism, such as hyperactivity, attention issues, sleep challenges, behavior problems, social issues, sensory processing issues, and more. In addition, the nervous system is so intimately linked with the digestive and immune systems (the other two systems most commonly affected in autism) that it can also contribute to things such as bowel and bladder problems, autoimmune challenges, and more. From here on out we will look at these systems in a “triangular” sort of approach with the nervous system being the link between them.
Possible ways the Nervous System can be Damaged or Injured
There are numerous ways to discuss, so we will focus on the major one for purpose of this article. The primary mode of injury we see in our office is what we would term Traumatic Birth Injury. For many of these children their nervous systems have been damaged right from the outset due to this birth injury, or even prior to that due to in-utero constraint issues (i.e. breech positioning).
Unfortunately, in the United States we have levels of birth intervention that even the WHO has termed to be at “epidemic” levels, especially the use of Cesarean delivery. The WHO states that C-section rates around 10% are normal and necessary, while anything above 15-20% “likely does more harm than good” – in the US 33-50% C-section rates are the norm for most hospitals.
It must also be realized, that even most vaginal deliveries are now induced or “augmented” as well. A recent study in the journal Pediatrics showed an increase in autism later on in life for induced births, confirming what we’ve been talking about in pediatric chiropractic for a long, long time.
The area that is most commonly injured during the birth process is the upper neck and skull. The risk of injury to these areas, and the resultant issues from it, go up exponentially as intervention levels go up. C-sections, forceps, vacuum extraction, and prolonged pushing all lead to greater risk of traumatic birth injury to the infants head and neck.
Unfortunately, no one in the medical system is really trained to check (or address) these sorts of injuries, so most of the time they go completely unmentioned to the parents… If the injury were addressed by a pediatric chiropractor shortly after it occurred, most of the neurological injuries associated with it could be prevented. If we are truly going to win the battle for autism in this country, we must learn how to prevent it, not cure it. This area would be a vital first step.
Effects of these Injuries
Once that injury occurs, it can put pressure on the brainstem and spinal cord, as well as the spinal nerves in the vicinity. What is more, by creating a misalignment and joint fixation complex (subluxation) in the area, it leads to improper neurological “signaling” or “communication” into and out of the central nervous system. This challenge to the communication system of the body is one of the primary reasons so many children with autism have challenges with sensory processing, social interaction and behavior, and learning.
All of this eventually puts the nervous system into a chronic or permanent state of stress. This is often referred to as the stress response, or fight/flight response. It is a response that is vital for short term reactions, but detrimental when “stuck on” for extended periods of time. Most children with autism have been in fight/flight from their first moments. This is why we see such a high correlation with infantile colic, ear infections, digestive disorders, and autism.
Again, if our healthcare system were designed to address these challenges immediately, rather than waiting for the symptoms to appear, far fewer children would be suffering with autism and related disorders. One can simply observe a child with autism and see the “stress and fear” in their eyes. It is such a joy to see this look change in their eyes as they progress through care in our office.
Getting back to our triangle example, this chronic state of stress wreaks havoc on the immune and digestive systems as both of them are “down-regulated” during chronic states of stress. Speaking specifically about the digestive system, sustained neurological stress responses can lead to an increase in decreased motility, constriction, cramping, and inflammation. When the digestive system is in this state it does a very poor job of breaking down foods and other substances, leading to even further inflammation and irritation that can spill over into the bloodstream and cause an immune response.
The immune system faces the same challenges… when we are in a constant state of neurological stress the immune system dysfunctions and leaves a child susceptible to allergies, asthma, eczema, and other inflammatory type reactions. All of this leads to more and more inflammation and irritation, and the cycle continues. This is why so many of these reactions and challenges are what we refer to as “vicious cycles” that essentially continue to feed each other and lead to greater and greater challenges. Somewhere, this cycle must be broken, and that is where chiropractic adjustments come into play.
Getting to the Root of the Problem
By addressing the injury and resultant subluxation, a specific chiropractic adjustment restores proper balance and alignment to the neuro-spinal system, and thus can help restore balance and function to the central nervous system. Depending on the severity and duration these injuries have been present, sometimes repeated adjustments can create positive change in a step-by-step process that leads to an improvement in behavior, digestion, immunity, learning, sleep, and more. As I have stated many times before, the sooner we start, the better our chances of having success with such care.
In summary, most every child we see with spectrum disorders has two major challenges at the root of their issues: An over stressed nervous system that is stuck on the “gas pedal” and thus in protection mode right from the beginning of life, or even before. Therefore an amazing quote by Dr. Bruce Lipton summarizes both the cause behind the issue, and if we really understand it, the solution as well. His quote states, “You can’t be in growth and protection at the same time.”
Translated to our analogy here, a child’s nervous system cannot be on the “gas pedal” (stress/protection) at the same time as it’s on the “brake pedal” (growth/development/organization/healing). A subluxation, specifically to the upper neck and brainstem area “locks in” the nervous system to that stress mode. A specifically trained pediatric chiropractor is the only provider on the planet trained to find and locate that subluxation, and if found, correct and resolve it. Doing so is analogous to “pumping the brakes” and getting the growth, relaxation, and healing system working again!
We believe that when a family has a child who is challenged by something like spectrum disorders, the number one thing they need is someone who can support them and help them make the proper decisions. Unfortunately, despite the enormous growth in this disorder, most pediatricians are quite lacking in their understanding of spectrum disorders and how neurology, nutrition, and toxicity play a role in it. Thankfully, Pediatric Chiropractors are experts in this area, and you can be rest assured that you will get the support and care your child needs to overcome these challenges and lead a bright and promising life! Our goal is to help as many families in our community as possible but are only able to achieve this level of impact if people know about us. Please talk to us before you or your family struggle anymore. If you know any community groups would benefit from this information please send this to them. Together we will make a massive impact.