Chiropractic Care Can Help Relieve Colic In Infants
One of the most trying times as a parent is getting through the night with a crying, inconsolable newborn. We know they’re in pain, we want to help, we try to help, but nothing we do seems to comfort them or stop the crying. It affects the infant, the household, and the family setting.
Colic is when a newborn baby cries for up to three hours or more, usually at night, and usually lasts for three months. The birth is a traumatic event for a newborn. Their head and neck are rotated and pulled on as the baby is birthed. This causes the bones of the neck and spine to become out of alignment and leads to muscle or ligament pain, discomfort in the abdomen, and tension headaches.
Chiropractic care can help by evaluating the cervical spine and lower back for areas that aren’t moving as they should and then we gently create mobility in those movements. The second that happens, the nervous system resets so we have a balance between the parasympathetic and the sympathetic nervous systems. We generally see colic resolved in 3 to 5 visits and suggest a round of probiotics to help comfort and restore their gut.
Our Clinic's Approach To Treating Colic In Infants
At Brown Family Chiropractic, we often treat infants that have symptoms of colic. If you are a parent of a baby that has colic or have been a parent of a baby that has colic, you may be well familiar with it. This is a condition that affects both the infant and the parents. Colic is crying in an infant for more than three hours at a time, usually in the evening, and it usually lasts about three months. You can imagine what that does to a family setting.
We find that chiropractic can have a great effect on kids with colic. We think about birth and the process itself, when a baby is delivered, there is traction placed on that cervical spine and then typically the head is rotated one way and pulled until the shoulder comes out. Then the head is rotated the other way and pulled again. So that often can cause some subluxation (a misalignment of the vertebrae) in the lower back (leading to digestion issues and constipation) and upper part of the neck or the cervical spine (leading to headaches and general discomfort).
Muscle tension in the spine and neck can lead to vertebrae being out of alignment and possibly reduce the signal of the nerve leaving that vertebra. If these nerves are not able to send a good signal to the organs they lead to, this can lead to issues arising in those organs.
During birth, ligaments get stretched and pulled and often that can cause pain in that area. It can even cause head pain. So we know when we have a headache. Baby’s don’t. They just know when they don’t feel good and they’re going to cry when they don’t feel good. What we do is we evaluate the spine. We can palpate or feel for areas that aren’t moving like they should. And then we create mobility in those movements. The second that happens, the nervous system resets so we have a balance between what we call the parasympathetic and the sympathetic, which are the two opposing parts of our nervous system. We want those balanced.
Getting a child with colic in for chiropractic care and evaluation can be very helpful and can actually make that infancy a lot happier.
Nutritional Care & Counseling
Parents often perceive—incorrectly—that the inconsolable crying is either a sign of serious illness or a result of poor parenting skills. Despite the ubiquity and frustration that accompany colic, recent studies suggest that low counts of intestinal lactobacilli may play a role in colic and have documented improved symptoms after treatment with lactobacilli.
After an examination and along with chiropractic adjustments, we may recommend that the infant be supplemented with a quality probiotic that contains lactobacilli. In our clinic, we offer in our clinic, Floraboost, an easy to administer powder that can be added to a bottle or blended with pureed food and taken as long as symptoms persist.