Chiropractic and your child

Chiropractic and your child

Many people are surprised to learn that babies, some within hours of birth, have their spines checked by a chiropractor. Once the facts are explained though, most parents see that having their child’s spine checked can be an important part of their healthcare. Birth often causes some of the first spinal misalignments and cord tension in a child. Plenty of pressure goes on baby’s head and neck during contractions and when the baby passes down through the birth canal – even with an uncomplicated delivery. A difficult birth, forceps or vacuum extraction, or caesarian birth can increase the stress on a newborn’s delicate spine.

Chiropractic care is the most common complementary and alternative medicine practice used by children in the US and in many other countries.2 Chiropractors are experts in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disorders of the neuromusculoskeletal system, and the effects of those disorders on general health. Chiropractors take a full history of health habits, including breast feeding, diet, sleep, and physical activity, and use this information to guide their clinical decision making to optimize their patient’s care. Furthermore, chiropractors have experience with co-managing patient care with other medical providers and may refer to other providers in the case of medical comorbidities, red flags, or for coordination of care.

We know that early health and lifestyle factors can have a strong impact on later health and quality of life.1 For example, up to 50% of children and adolescents will have back pain or other MSK problems in a 1-year period, and about 1/3 of them will be recurrent, often well into adulthood.1 Children and adolescents with back pain may develop pain-focused behaviours and distress that may limit their participation in physical activities and sports that can help lay the foundation for a healthy lifestyle.

Chiropractic is a safe, drugless approach to healthcare. Adverse events of manual therapy are rare, as chiropractors take the time to perform a thorough history and physical exam, including orthopedic and neurological testing, to better diagnose and treat their patients.2 Furthermore, chiropractors treat their pediatric patients with a range of modalities, aside from manual therapy. Some additional treatments provided by chiropractors include 1:

  • Monitoring child development, motor skills and well being through screenings and exams
  • Prevention and treatment of MSK conditions and lifestyle-related problems through the promotion of safe physical activity recommendations and advice on prevention of injuries
  • Dietary counselling, including advice on breastfeeding and nutritional considerations

For more information, or to book an appointment, contact the clinic.


  1. Hartvigsen J, & Hestbaek L. (2009). Children and chiropractic care: a window of opportunity. Journal of Manipulative & Physiological Therapeutics, 32(8), 603–605.
  2. Hawk, C., Schneider, M. J., Vallone, S., & Hewitt, E. G. (2016). Best Practices for Chiropractic Care of Children: A Consensus Update. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 39(3), 158–168.