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Research Wednesday: Autism & Chiropractic

Welcome to our very first Research Wednesday! Every Wednesday we will dive into some of the latest research when it comes to chiropractic and raising healthy families. We encourage you to read, learn, ask questions, implement and share. At Tree of Life Chiropractic - Seattle, it is our passion and calling to serve you to our up most ability.

Autism & Chiropractic Seattle

Anthony Pellegrino, BS, DC

This case study was published May 26th, 2016 by the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health in order to describe the affects of chiropractic care on a 4-year-old boy diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) experiencing significant language delays.

A 4-year-old boy presented as being diagnosed with ASD and parent's main complaint was "delay of language." His parents also noted that he had experienced the flu, frequent colds, ear infections and allergies since birth.

After an initial exam, his chiropractic care consisted of 15 visits over a period of 8 weeks. After the initial visit, the patient made eye contact with the practitioner for the first time. During the 6th visit, the parents noted that the patient had asked to "eat" that morning and had began calling his aunt "Auntie" when she was present. On top of becoming more verbal through care, the parents noted him having significantly less temper tantrums.

On the 15th appointment, the patient's mother completed her second Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist (First one completed prior to care). The ATEC consists of four sections, assessing the patient's speech/language/communication, sociability, sensory/cognitive awareness, and health/physical/behavior. Through the period of care the patient improved in all four sections with 34.8% improvement in speech/language/communication, 50% improvement in sociability, 50% improvement in sensory/cognitive awareness and 31.4% improvement in health/physical/behavior.

The study helps strengthen the relationship between the reduction of vertebral subluxation and the improvement in function of patients with ASD.

Dr. Moe's Commentary

At Tree of Life Chiropractic, we see lots of families and kiddos so the topic of ASD has been coming up more and more often. In 2014, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported that 1 in 68 children are classified as having ASD, up from 1 in 110 in 2006. It is now the third most common developmental disorder in children.

So how does chiropractic help with autism?

When it comes to autism, the central nervous system is greatly affected resulting in issues such as hyperactivity, attention issues, sleep challenges, behavior problems, social issues, sensory processing issues, bowel and bladder problems, autoimmune challenges, and more. Therefore, any trauma or stress on the brain stem and/or spinal cord that can compromise the nervous system will have a huge affect on these conditions.

Where does the trauma and stress come from that can compromise our nervous system? We call them the 3 T's: thoughts, traumas and toxins.

  • Traumas (physical)

  • Birth trauma, in-utero constraint, falls, injuries, car seats, baby bjorns, etc.

  • Toxins (chemical)

  • Vaccines, prevacid, antibiotics, soaps, lotions, cleaning products, formula, etc.

  • Thoughts (emotional)

  • Time in the hospital/NICU, medical testing, stress on the mother and family, etc.

These trauma's and/or stresses to our nervous system can create subluxations which are misalignments in our spine affecting the ability of our nervous system to function properly and adapt to our environment.

As a pediatric chiropractor, we specialize in finding and correcting these subluxations that cause stress on the nervous system and can amplify and add conditions and symptoms related to ASD. When the nervous system functions and adapts the way they were intended to we see massive progress in our kiddos with autism or other spectrum disorders. We by no means treat or heal autism but we do give our children the best advantage possible to live as healthy as possible through a properly functioning nervous system. Through specific chiropractic care, we have seen patients with ASD or other spectrum-related disorders function at higher levels with a reduction in related symptoms.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding autism and other spectrum disorders relating to chiropractic please don't hesitate to call, message us or schedule an initial appointment.

Be Blessed!


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