Today's parents are special. You have to be - you are raising children in a very different world and as my mother likes to remind me, "things just aren't the way they used to be."
She's right! Just look around..... Food is injected and sprayed, water is laden with chemicals, as are the myriad of products we use, from deodorants to furniture paint to our household cleaning materials. There are many stressors in our modern day lifestyle and parents have the right to be alarmed because children are particularly vulnerable to them. From conception onwards, these stressors create a compounding effect and the result can be a child who is immune-challenged or who struggles to learn, to express themselves, to interrelate and to live in optimal health.
What is Optimal Health?
It is not simply a matter of 'feeling good' or being symptom free. A true indicator of health is when the body is able to effectively adapt to stressors placed on it. Yet many children today are super sized, undernourished, and over-medicated - and their bodies are clearly not coping.
Pesticides, heavy metals, herbicides, and fumigants used in generic produce and products have all been linked to abnormalities in behavior, perception, cognition, and motor ability during early childhood, even when exposure is at so-called 'harmless levels'.
If you feel overwhelmed by the effort needed to keep up on these health threats, the good news is that it is now easier than ever to access up-to-date information and tools to strengthen your family's health. By understanding and reducing stressors, as parents you can potentially help your children avoid illness, alleviate symptoms and encourage optimal body function for all ages of your child's life. An informed parent is an empowered parent, so here are some ideas to help your family move towards a greater quality of live.
1. Ask Good Questions
The quality of your life can be determined by the quality of questions you ask. As a parent, you can usually sense when something is not quite right with your child. If you have the hunch that your baby is ill, you usually ask the question 'why?'. If your child is chronically unwell, you usually ask 'why?'. If your child's bowel aren't regular, you ask 'why?'. If your child's behavior is poor, ask 'why?'. If your child cannot concentrate, ask 'why?'. This seems obvious but often the cause of imbalance is overlooked in the haste to remedy the 'cause' with medicines. Imagine if all the fish in a lake were found to have deformities and cancerous tumors... how would biologists and wildlife experts tackle this issue? Do you think they would cut out the tumors and dose the fish with medication? Of course not. That would be illogical. Instead, they would ask 'WHY?'.
They would look at the ecosystem and consider the factors that could have created the ill health of the fish, and they would set out to eradicate the factors and create a solution that offers future PREVENTION.
Now imagine a child who behaves aggressively; how would health experts tackle this problem? Is it logical to offer him/her medication for behavioral issues? Or should they be looking at the food he/she is eating - foods that lack nutrition and life, and that are toxic with additives and preservatives? Or the fact that he is dehydrated? Or that he/she is over-stimulated by electronic gadgets and computers, or hardly ever raises a sweat outside or breathes fresh air?
Drugs are not always the answer. Collectively we are more reliant on medication than ever before. I believe we need to remember that we can take charge of our health by empowering ourselves with knowledge and awareness. We can commit to asking a few good questions and seeking logical answers and solutions to our (and your child's) health issue. In doing so, we will be better enabled to navigate our family's health and well-being.
2. Educate your Children about their Own Bodies
Kids are fascinated with how the body works. From an early age make learning about the body fun. There are plenty of books, DVDs and websites that add visual impact. When kids learn how their body works and how to care for it, they also learn how to listen and respect it. In our 'quick-fix' society, children are often given the message that when they are sick, they need medicine. However, if they are taught that health comes form within and that their bodies have a tremendous intelligence and capacity to ward off illness, then early warning signs like a runny nose or a sore throat will not be seen as a sign to take antibiotics, but as an indication that they need to slow down, get lots of rest and boost their immunity with natural foods.
3. Look for Signs of a Body out of Balance
As a parent it is important that you observe your children to see that they are integrating their world in age-appropriate ways. An imbalance can indicate in many way. For example, a baby may cry or fuss during feeding and arch her back, her head may be unevenly shaped, or she may not like lying on her tummy. Becoming familiar with the expected developmental milestones will help you assess whether your child's behavior is problematic or not.
For older children, some warning signs of a body out of balance may be...
Slow recovery from minor illnesses or recurring colds, flus and allergies
Poor balance and coordination
Inability to concentrate
Over-sensitivity to environmental noises
Eczema, pale skin, discoloration under their eyes
Bloated tummy, constipation
Defiant or angry behavior
Consistently low mood, lake of enthusiasm
Fatigue upon waking, general sluggishness
The human body gives us many indicators that it is not able to handle the stressors placed upon it. Symptoms are a message from our body that there is a problem and that change is needed.
Stress and Chiropractic
Not all stress is bad.
A 30-minute workout at the gym for a 25-year old is good stress. The same workout for your 75-year old grandmother would likely be a bad stress!
Repetitive motions (painting the ceiling), postural distortions (falling asleep with your neck twisted), and whiplash injuries from a car accident are physical stresses. So are slips and falls. Even being born!
Mental (Emotional) Stress
Ever faced an impossible deadline at work? Or grieved the loss of a loved one? Notice the posture of someone who is depressed. Frustration, or a sense of powerlessness at work are common forms of emotional stress.
Today's environment constantly assaults us with chemicals. Drugs, preservatives, tobacco, alcohol, pollen and a host of other substances can affect our nervous system and muscle tone.When your body reacts by "tripping the circuit breaker" and causing vertebral subluxation, chiropractic care may help.
Stress can't be eliminated, but regular chiropractic care may help you better accommodate and adapt to it (stress).
4. Assist with colic and irritable baby syndrome
5. Help with asthma, breathing difficulties, and allergies.
6. Encourage good spinal posture (the average child falls 5,000 times per year once he/she learns to walk).
7. Help improve their child's ability to concentrate.
8. Assist with behavioral problems.
9. Help alleviate digestive problems.
10. Assist with bed-wetting and sleep issues.
Give us a call today to experience Chiropractic in our Elkhorn, WI wellness office!
Research to support how effective chiropractic for children is extensive and parental satisfaction with results achieved is compelling in its own right. Chiropractic for kids/children has been shown to be gentle, safe, and effective. Babies can be check in our Elkhorn, WI office right after birth with special techniques to carefully correct the subluxated area and allow the baby's nervous system and body to grow and develop normally.
Give our Elkhorn, WI wellness office a call today. We are here to serve you and your family's needs.
The nervous system is the master controller of our body and if its communication channels become fuzzy, distorted or damaged then we experience all sorts of communication errors. For babies and children, this ineffective communication may play out as colic or irritability, an inability to suckle and breastfeed, poor sleep, developmental delays, digestion issues, asthma, behavioral problems, low energy, inability to concentrate, headaches, etc - the list is endless. In fact, regardless of what the end result or symptom may be, all roads to "optimal health" lead back to the body's ability to self-regulate, self-heal and function at peak level. While chiropractic may be able to help with a number of health issues, our focus is not treating or curing ailments; our focus is ensuring the nervous system has every opportunity to work efficiently and effectively.
Can you cook with the lights out?
For example, imagine your nervous system is like the lighting system in your home. If the lights start to dim, you might not be able to cook dinner very well, you may start banging into furniture, you may trip or hurt yourself, you may feel frightened. How the dim lights influence you precisely will vary but the issue is still the same - there is a communication problem between the wiring and the light globe which needs detecting and fixing. In the same way, chiropractors spend years studying the nervous system to be able to detect and correct these "communication errors" (subluxations) in the body.
There are many pervasive myths that have been misleading people in the natural health field for many years. Some of these myths continue to be the mainstream thought even though science has clearly demonstrated that they are untrue. Understanding these health myths and the real truth sets you free from a lifestyle of sickness and disease.
1. Myth: Eating Fat Makes You Fat:
Truth: Diets high in omega 3 fatty acids and saturated fats are linked to lower rates of obesity and better overall health. Man-made fats (trans-fats) and refined vegetable oils are inflammatory and disrupt metabolism.
Truth: Saturated fat & cholesterol are powerful nutrients that the body uses for hormone function, calcium metabolism and cellular structure. They act as stabilizing units that protect the body from inflammatory damage.
The Massai & Rendille Tribes in Africa have some of the lowest rates of heart disease yet they consume a diet consisting of 65% saturated fat and loads of cholesterol through red meat & fermented grass-fed dairy products.
The Eskimos/Inuit: Consume a 75% saturated fat diet (whale blubber) yet have extremely low rates of heart disease.
Bad Fats: Omega-6 fatty acids from refined oils such as corn, soybean, safflower, peanut, cottonseed & sunflower along with hydrogenated oils are highly inflammatory and must be avoided at all costs. Saturated fat should be welcomed along with omega-3 fatty acids.
3. Myth: Lots of Exercise = Better:Most people believe that running long distances and lifting light weights for many repetitions is good. Running 10K’s and marathons are healthy.
Truth: Long distance cardiovascular exercise increases cortisol secretions which inflame the body and damage joints & ligaments leading to injury/overtraining and possible weight gain.
a. High Intensity, short time period training (HIT) boosts growth hormone that allows the body to build muscle, burn fat and build a greater anti-oxidant reserve.
b. Train 4-5 days a week for 10-20 minutes each session at a very high intensity.
4. Myth: I Feel Good so I must be Healthy.
Truth: Every cell is hit by over 10,000 free radical interactions every second. We never feel this. The heart rebuilds all 60 billion cells every 7 months. We never feel this. Between 10,000 and 100,000 cancer cells are building in our body every day. We never feel this.
60% of heart attack patients never thought they had a heart problem until they ended up in the emergency room. Early detection testing for cancer cannot find abnormal growths until they are nearly 4-10 billion cancer cells large…this is 7-15 of development.
5. Myth: Health is my natural condition until I get sick, injured or have an emergency.
Truth: Health is a dynamic condition that you are either building or losing every moment. You are either moving toward or away from 100% God-given maximal function with every decision and lifestyle choice you make.
The Central Nervous System is what controls & coordinates every function within the body at all times. Damage to the nervous system causes malcoordinated function to the region of the body it serves. The nervous system is protected by the skull and spine. When these regions are damaged and misaligned it interferes with healthy neurological function causing a state of dis-ease or lack of ease (healthy coordinated function). This nerve blockage is called subluxation. Uncorrected, subluxation leads to inflammation & abnormal cell formation – eventually major malfunction of the organ/system.
An accurate definition of HEALTH is central to understanding chiropractic wellness care. In our society today, health is often an improperly used term. Many people perceive health as "feeling good, without any pain or symptoms"; but it is much more than that. Health is really about one thing---function. How well you are functioning determines how truly well you are. When your body is functioning at 100%, you have the innate ability to adapt to anything that occurs in your environment and you can continually maintain optimal health.
I'll health results from an inability to adapt to stressors - thoughts, traumas, toxins (emotional stress, physical stress, chemical stress) and the result is decreased functionality and a weakened immune system. Events like car accidents and physical traumas are often out of your control but how you are functioning and adapting to your environment on a daily basis is completely within your power. Therefore, the choice to be healthy or unhealthy is under your control. Genetics and 'bad luck' are not to blame, and are often used as an excuse in the health care community. Have you ever wondered why when there is a "flu outbreak" , not everyone gets sick?? It's because only those who have lost the ability to adapt to their environment are susceptible to illness. Those of us that are functioning at a higher level deal with the virus without even knowing about it.
Tubes in ears: Surgical implantation of artificial drainage tubes require the administration of a risky anesthesia and then, they usually come out.
However, many parents are choosing a more conservative approach:
Chiropractic care: A thorough examination to locate, and specific adjustments to reduce nerve disturbances that may make the ears prone to infection.
Our bodies have an incredible capacity to fight infection. When that ability is impaired, it means something else is going on. Our focus is on the integrity and function of the nervous system.
Nerve CompromiseIt surprises many to learn that some of the nerves that control, regulate and monitor the ear begin in the brain stem, continue down the spinal cord and exit out from between the bones of the spinal column. Changes to the function of the bones in the upper neck may compromise the quality of the nerve signals to and from the brain. Obviously, this can affect the ability of ANY organ or tissue, or in this case, your child's ear to "defend itself" from infection.
Impaired DrainageNerve compromise is often accompanied by abnormal tension to the muscles that support the spine. Besides "protecting" the spine from further compromise, these muscle spasms can exert pressure on nearby lymphatic drainage ducts. This prevents natural drainage, further compounding the problem.
What We DoOur approach is simple. Since chiropractic care isn't a treatment for infections of any type, when a parent brings their child to us to check, we look specifically for distortions in the upper spine. If nerve tension is detected, we gently reduce it with safe, natural, and corrective chiropractic adjustments. This helps restore nervous system integrity. For a child or infant, this usually requires little more than a light touch with our fingertip at just the right place and direction.
Parents love our approach and we explain everything in advance. Our adjusting approach is safe and results are achieved naturally.
Call or email our Elkhorn, WI & Walworth County Wellness office today!
Other common reasons for children to see a chiropractor include difficulty nursing, colic, and ear/sinus infections, which are all conditions often caused by problems with the upper neck that likely were caused by birth trauma such as C-section or forceps delivery. Parents also bring their kids to a chiropractor for care of colds and flu-like issues.
Our office specializes in family wellness and we offer great family discount plans, allowing for the entire family to get their nervous system checked (with or without insurance) at a very affordable rate. Since chiropractic seeks to restore balance and proper function to the nervous system, chiropractic not only for mom and dad but for the entire family often has life-altering changes!
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