Children & Chiropractic

“My newborn was diagnosed with reflux after several days of being irritable and inconsolable.  She was given a prescription, but I was very hesitant to give my baby medicine if there was another way to cure her.  I began bringing her to Dr. Bradley Meskimen right when she turned 2 months old.  We made appointments for every two weeks and slowly had to give our daughter less medication.  After the first visit she rarely had reflux flare ups. By the 5th visit she was completely off of the medicine.  We did three more follow up appointments with Dr. Bradley to make sure the reflux problem was resolved.  She is now 4 months old and has no reflux problem or trouble sleeping through the night.”

-Nicky P. (daughter Hollis;  patient @ Meskimen Chiropractic Center;  2013.)


Can Chiropractic Care Help My Child?

A 1989 study of colicky infants in Denmark reports a success rate of 94% among the study group following a program of chiropractic care. More than two-thirds of all children will have one or more episodes of ear infections by the age of three. A 1996 study of a group of children with ear infections and discomfort found that 93% of the study group reported improvement with chiropractic care.  Thousands of children have found relief  from gastric reflux after a series of chiropractic treatments.  Thousands more have found relief from bedwetting with chiropractic. Nerve interference due to spinal misalignment can cause the communication between your child’s brain and bladder to break down. Chiropractic care can remove the interference that can cause loss of bladder control.


A child’s spine can be stressed or injured during birth. As children learn to walk and run, they fall and can suffer strains and sprains. Periodic checks by a doctor of chiropractic can help identify any developing weaknesses in your child’s spine.

To help determine whether your child needs treatment, your chiropractor asks questions about your child’s birth and development, such as: Did anything unusual happen during birth? At what age did your child begin to crawl? Stand? Walk? How do you hold your child? Does your child have unexplained pain, discomfort, or crying? What are your child’s physical activities? What falls or injuries has your child had?

How Does My Baby’s Spine Develop?

Adults have three natural curves in their spines that help support their bodies. At birth, an infant has only one curve. The other curves develop as the child begins to hold up his or her head and learns to crawl and stand.

How Does a Chiropractor Treat My Child?

It’s important for your child to grow up with a healthy spine. Early spinal exams by a doctor of chiropractic may help prevent many health problems later in life. A chiropractor is trained to help maintain or restore the health of your child’s spine through adjustments and other gentle treatments. Children usually respond quickly to treatment.

Spinal Adjustments

Spinal adjustments for children are usually different from adjustments for adults. Dr Meskimen gently presses on the spine to restore proper motion of the vertebrae and relax the muscles. Your child should feel no pain. The Dr. applies light pressure with the fingers during an adjustment.

How Can I Help My Child?

You can help your child develop a healthy spine by scheduling regular chiropractic exams, just as you make regular dental appointments. Observe your child’s movements and follow these tips:

– When you lift or hold an infant, always support the child’s back and neck with your hands.
– Pick up an older child by grasping his or her body under both arms.
– Never pick up your child by the arms or legs.
– Use an approved car seat that supports your baby’s head and neck.
– Provide a firm bed and chairs.
– Make sure your child gets enough sleep and eats a well-balanced diet.
– Make sure your child wears appropriate protective gear when playing sports.
– If your child uses a backpack, make sure it’s carried over both shoulders.

At Birth

The spine of a newborn is C-shaped, with one curve. A newborn has neither the balancing curves nor the strength to hold his or her head upright. The birth process may be one of the most traumatic events of our lives. Even so-called “natural” birthing methods can stress a still-developing spine. The resulting irritation to the nervous system can be the cause of many newborn health complaints. Colic, unexplained crying, poor appetite, breathing problems, and allergic reactions can often be traced to nervous system dysfunction caused by a malfunctioning spine.

At About Six Months

As your infant lifts his or head during the first few months, the neck (cervical) curve and its muscles develop. Strong neck muscles help an infant hold up a heavy head.

At About Nine Months

As your infant learns to crawl and stand, the lower back (lumbar) curve and its muscles develop. Strong back muscles help give your child the strength and balance to walk and run. Head support, followed by crawling, and a baby’s first few steps should be followed by chiropractic checkups. If neglected, the bumps and falls during this period of rapid growth may lead to serious spinal deformities later in life. This can set the stage for scoliosis, “growing pains,” and a weakened immune system response.

Physical Exam

Dr. Meskimen will observe your child’s posture and movements, check reflexes and range of motion in the joints, gently palpate the spine, and check for scoliosis (curvature of the spine). The exam should not be painful for your child.


Based on the results of your child’s exam, Dr. Meskimen may recommend a treatment program to correct any abnormal curvature of the spine, joints or bones that are not moving properly, or loss of flexibility in the spine. If needed, Dr. Meskimen also consults with or refers you to other medical specialists, such as a pediatrician.

Why risk your child’s good health during these critical years of development? Now is the time to schedule your child’s spinal exam! You can have confidence that chiropractic is safe and effective care for your little one. When spinal misalignments go untreated, your child’s body continues to grow. An injured spine will simply grow misaligned, leading to degenerative or permanent conditions later in life.

Regular adjustments are an essential ingredient for healthy children! With gentle, expert hands, we can restore your child’s spinal health. Children of all ages can benefit from our expertise in dealing with spinal problems. We see infants dealing with spinal stress from the birth process and toddlers learning to walk. We also see school children active in sports and adolescents going through “growth spurts.”

Chiropractic can be effective in the care of:

– Colic
– Asthma
– Sports Injuries
– Ear Infections
– Headaches*
– Allergies
– Neck Pain
– Scoliosis
– Gastric Reflux
– Back Pain

With gentle, precise adjustments, chiropractic can restore your child’s misaligned vertebrae into proper position. By eliminating interference now, you could be preventing your child from having future problems down the road!

*Headaches can be difficult for an adult to manage and unfortunately suffer through but to watch a child endure a headache can be even more painful.

If you’re concerned about treating your child’s headaches with synthetic and unnatural remedies, you should be. A child’s growing body may rebound quickly from injuries and falls but when you start giving them artificial substances to cope with pain their small bodies can become reliant on those drugs and at some point resistant to the effects of those same drugs.

If you haven’t taken your child to see a chiropractor yet, that is one of the most natural and gentle options available. A chiropractor can help you determine by way of a thorough evaluation where the problem may lie and what treatment options are available. Quite often the problem doesn’t lie within the head itself but may stem from the neck, shoulders or back.