It is vitally important for your growing child to have a healthy spine and nervous system. Most time they will not tell you they have a pain or stiffness in their spine. They might exhibit behavioural changes, a lowered immune system, or even just not sleeping well.

Just as you take your children to the dentist for a check-up, it is wise to bring them in for a thorough spinal examination. Problems detected early can often be corrected, preventing problems later in life. Remember ‘as the twig bends, so grows the tree’.

How does a child get a spinal problem?
There are so many ways a child’s spine may be damaged. The major events that can cause trauma and damage a child’s spine are:
1. The birth process. A normal delivery puts a huge amount of stress on the baby as they pass through the birth canal. This can be their very first spinal dysfunction in life. Let alone add a difficult labor where forceps, vacuum extraction or other means had to be applied.

2. Learning to walk. In the early years of life a child before the age of 5 would have had over a thousand falls. Approximately about 100 of these are significant enough to cause trauma to the spine. If you watch a newborn trying to walk, how many times do they land on their buttocks or stumble forward?

3. Tumbles and falls in the early years.

4. Adolescent and teenage growth spurts. Sudden growth make the bones grow rapidly sometimes the nervous system and the muscles need sometime to catch up. After a sudden growth spurt, a child can become clumsy, until their nervous system is able to adapt to the new length and body awareness.

5. Carrying heavy school bags and then carrying them incorrectly can be one of the main reasons a child could develop a spinal twist and unleveling of the hips and shoulders.
Playing sports. All sports put stress on the body. The trick is just harnessing the advantages of the sport and minimising the detrimental effects. Even chess can put stress on the spine, due to the prolonged sitting and sometimes slumped forward posture that can be adopted when at the chess board.

How can spinal health help children?
Spinal care can help with children becoming body aware. Letting their brain perceive where their body is and understand what their body can achieve.

It can help them become aware and manage their posture better. Parents of chiropractic adjusted children, often report that they seem healthier than other kids their age.

Spinal adjustments have shown benefits in scoliosis, headaches, growing pains, and irritability.

Children with fragmented sleep were characterised by lower performance on neurobehavioural functioning measures, particularly those that were associated with more complex tasks such as a continuous performance test or symbol-digit substitution. These children have also been shown to have higher rates of behavioural problems reported by their parents.

Over-scheduling, non-enforced bedtimes, sharing a bed with a sibling and breathing problems – such as sleep apnea, and snoring – can rob a child of their night’s rest. It is also essential to keep televisions, video games, radios, and telephones out of your child’s bedroom during sleeping hours as these only serve as distractions and will disturbed their sleep.

Is spinal care in children different to that for adults?
Spinal adjusting techniques are not painful, but they are modified to fit a child’s size, weight and unique spinal problem.

So why wait? Bring your children in for a spinal check up when you come in next.

Checkup: Between the endless trips to the shopping mall for new shoes, new clothes and new school supplies, take a few moments to schedule a back-to-school chiropractic check up for your child. This will help their nervous system to start the scholastic year free of interference and flourish their learning.

If you would like more information or would like to book an appointment at Neurohealth Chiropractic – please call the clinic on 9905 9099 or email us or fill in the contact form from our website

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This article is written by Dr. Steven Cannon, Chiropractor – Neurohealth Chiropractic