In the past, I had always associated chiropractic care with injury. Visiting a chiropractor was one of the first appointments I made after being in a car accident years ago. After talking to moms who take their children to chiropractors for regular visits, I needed to find out more.
Here's my interview with Tracey Smith, DC, CACCP:
Q. What is chiropractic care and who is it beneficial for?
Chiropractic care is a natural form of health care that uses spinal adjustments to correct misalignment of the spine and restore proper function to the nervous system. This will help your body heal naturally.
Chiropractic care is beneficial for every person, of every age. One really great thing about the practice of chiropractic, is that the technique can be altered to the specific requirements, or limitations of, the person receiving the adjustment. There are techniques safe for infants, for elderly, for people with osteoporosis, people who have had spinal surgery, and more.
It is not uncommon for chiropractic "believers" to feel as if chiropractic care can treat almost any condition, disease, or symptom; however, the reality is that chiropractic care does not "treat" anything!
Chiropractors detect, and correct misalignments in the spine that are causing interference with the nervous system (called subluxations), which cause the body to function at less than 100%. Once those subluxations are corrected, the body is able to function better, and often times heal itself.
The benefits of chiropractic care are quite vast and vary based on the person. I have seen women get pregnant, who have been struggling with infertility. I have seen seizures reduced, in a child suffering with multiple daily seizures for years.
I have seen women's monthly cycles restored back to normal, allergies reduced, headaches improved, and so much more. When the body is removed of interference, and proper function restored, it is amazing the amount of healing our bodies are capable of!
Q. Are chiropractic adjustments safe during pregnancy?
Pregnant women, who are limited by what medications they can take, find an unbelievable amount of pain and discomfort relief, with chiropractic care. In fact, many women have shared with me that they have been unable to experience this relief with any other therapy or lifestyle change they have tried! Ideally, if you are pregnant, you will search for a chiropractor who is Webster Certified. Webster is a technique for releasing intra-uterine constraint and is often associated with optimal positioning of baby.
Q. What are the benefits of chiropractic care for children, including infants?
Chiropractic care is extremely beneficial for children, including newborns and infants. The misalignments in an child's spine are easily corrected, with gentle specific care. When their subluxations have been corrected, and their healing and function has been restored, children are able to see their full potential and experience life at a higher level. The same is true for infants.
Chiropractic care can be used if mom and baby have had a traumatic birth, or if their breastfeeding relationship is not going as planed. Chiropractic adjustments can also help with a baby that has colic or digestive issues. There are countless other issues that arise in the first few weeks and months of life, and often parents are left feeling hopeless.
Chiropractic care can provide a safe, gentle, and effective alternative to other more intensive options out there.
Q. ) What tips do you have for preventing or reducing the wear-and-tear and strain of toting around young children?
Nursing position, co-sleeping, toting baby around in carriers, and getting up and down from the floor to play with baby are just a few examples of stress on a parent's body.
A few tips: try to avoid carrying baby around in their car seat. Leave the car seat in the car and carry baby, either in your arms, or in a baby carrier. I could write an entire article on the benefits of getting a baby ergonomically out of their car seat, so I will just say that baby and parents will both benefit tremendously from only using the car seat in the car.
Q. What recommendations do you have for providing a quality chiropractic care provider for the whole family?
A good family chiropractor provides so much more for you and your family than spinal alignment. They provide invaluable perspective, as well as knowledge and information about living a healthy life. They provide alternatives to the more invasive suggestions, such as drugs or surgery.
If you are pregnant, or want to have your young children checked, a chiropractor who is certified in pregnancy and pediatric care may have tips and tricks that a chiropractor less experienced in that area may not have. I am a member of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association, and received my certification in family and pregnancy care through that organization.
When choosing a chiropractor who has experience in whole family care, www.icpa4kids.org is a great place to begin your search.
Tracey Smith has been a practicing chiropractor in High Point, NC for seven years. She is married to Jordan Smith, with whom she has three children; Treydan, Colton, Jordi. All of Tracey's children were born at home and have been under chiropractic care since moments after their birth.
Top Photo Credit: Wan Leonard/ Flickr.com