Research Wednesday: Chiropractic and Toddler Sleep Patterns
Welcome to 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.
Case Report: The Effect of a Chiropractic Spinal Adjustment on Toddler Sleep Pattern and Behavior
Author's abstract: The interaction of the cervical spine with the nervous system, and the effectiveness of spinal adjustment in the management of the poor sleeping patterns of a 12- month-old male are discussed. The history of an often irritable, unsettled infant, is also presented with a brief, but relevant, research review. Since birth, this 12 month old boy would wake up 7-8 times a night. Medication (Panadol TM ) had been given without success. Following the first adjustment (C 1/2 and T 8/ 9) the child slept for seven hours. A second case is briefly discussed of a 4-month-old boy with depressed appetite who slept only 30 minutes at a time. After one adjustment, he slept for 11 hours. Four months later he had a fall and his poor sleeping habit returned. After one adjustment the sleeping returned to normal, in addition he had a normal appetite.
Dr. Moe's Commentary
One of the most common reasons moms and dads bring in their children for chiropractic care is sleeping difficulties. Sleep and rest are absolutely crucial to the developing child as well as the parents looking to get some much deserved rest.
How does chiropractic care help with sleep?
The autonomic nervous system is separated into the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system. The sympathetic nervous system, also known as the gas pedal is your body's stress response (fight or flight). The parasympathetic nervous system, known as the brake pedal, is responsible for rest, relaxation, digestion and immune function. This is really important for your child's development. Any pressure or subluxation to a child's nervous system puts them into a dominate sympathetic state (fight or flight) which takes away from their rest, relaxation, digestion and immune function abilities and therefore ability to sleep and grow. Balance between your sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system is key. Therefore, any trauma or stress on the brain stem and/or spinal cord that can compromise the nervous system and its balance will have a huge affect your child's ability to sleep.
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.
Birth trauma, in-utero constraint, falls, injuries, car seats, baby bjorns, etc.
Vaccines, prevacid, antibiotics, soaps, lotions, cleaning products, formula, etc.
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 your child's subluxation in order for them to function optimally and sleep better.
Please feel free to contact us with any questions and /or concerns or schedule and initial consultation to see how chiropractic can help your family.