A Message from our Editor, Issue #58 - Guarding the Sacred Space
Almost daily, I see parents discussing the benefits of chiropractic care for their children. What many do not know is that chiropractors have included children in their recommendations for health and well-being since the inception of chiropractic.
Consider what D.D. Palmer, the discoverer of chiropractic, said in The Chiropractor’s Adjustor as far back as 1910: “The principles of Chiropractic should be known and utilized in the growth of the infant and continue as a safeguard throughout life.”
Chiropractic care for children is not new, and more parents are making the logical, safe, and informed choice to include it for their families’ well-being. A recent report published by the National Center for Health Statistics has put chiropractic care at the top of its list as the most sought-after form of complimentary care for children.
When I first went under chiropractic care 40 years ago, I was fortunate enough to see someone who focused on traditional family care. He explained the importance of the nervous system in controlling all body systems and functions, citing Gray’s Anatomy and Guyton’s Physiology as canonical texts on the topic. I learned how the brain sends messages via neurological impulses to the body and how messages from the body communicate via the nervous system back to the brain in a delicately balanced feedback loop.
The bony spine and cranium house and protect the central nervous system from injury. If, however, their alignment is altered or their movement is impaired, the development and function of the nervous system will be adversely affected. Doctors of chiropractic address these misalignments with specific spinal and cranial adjustments. When we clear obstructions to the nervous system, all physiological systems and functions improve. The nervous system will better regulate the body, and the body will relay positive signals back to the brain.
Following our four years of chiropractic college education, my husband and I opened a family practice in 1981. We took care of infants and children regularly, and throughout the years we noticed a direct relationship between the birth story of the family and the baby’s spinal and cranial alignment. Babies who were born with manual pulling, forceps, vacuum, and C-sections presented with more misalignments than those whose birth procedures were non-invasive.
My clinical observation prompted me to discuss the birth process with all my patients, and I found fathers to be the most receptive to this discussion. Having been present at the birth, dads were able to observe the amount of force used to deliver their children. Remembering the birth, it became obvious to them that their infant’s spine had experienced considerable strain during delivery. I think dads who observed these births recognized a certain desire to protect the family which had been overpowered by the formal setting and the people in control of it. Birth trauma often affects the whole family, even if the mother and child are the only ones receiving the physical side of it. I can’t describe how powerful it is to see the trauma resolved in each member of the family as the infant’s well-being improves under chiropractic care.
Over the years, many parents came to our office concerned about their infants’ early behaviors, such as irritability, restless sleep, unwarranted crying, poor feeding habits, back arching, and neck tilts. These are only a few of the possible manifestations of a nervous systems under continuous stress. After a few weeks of regular chiropractic adjustments, the function of their babies’ physiology noticeably improved.
I think of the importance of chiropractic for improving physiology from the beginning of life, but this is only a portion, albeit a significant one, of the benefits offered by chiropractic. More and more, I see parents recognizing the core principles of chiropractic in their own lives— that life expresses intelligence, and that the human body has an innate ability to do what it was designed to do, if only we can respect and trust it.
This summer, I want to thank all of the dads who are stepping up and becoming involved in making logical, informed choices for their families, and who recognize the science of normal physiology as their guide. I hope that all fathers will come to realize the intimate engagement they have in their children’s births, and to see the role they play in keeping the space guarded for the natural beauty of new life to flourish.
“For you have in your possession a sacred trust. Guard it well.” —B.J. Pamler
For the raising of the consciousness,
Jeanne Ohm, D.C.
This article appeared in Pathways to Family Wellness magazine, Issue #58.
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