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There is nothing more precious than a newborn baby and few things more challenging to parents than a newborn with health issues. Throughout my 35-plus years as a health care practitioner, one of the highlights has been the opportunity to work with moms and babies. I’ve been seeing more questions coming up on social media as well as in person at our office so I thought I would address some of those questions this month. Here are answers to some common questions about chiropractic during pregnancy and for babies.

Is chiropractic safe for pregnant moms as well as babies?

This is one of the most common questions we hear on this topic, in regard to the moms-to-be as well as the babies. Let’s address mom first. A study published in the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine in 2007 showed no adverse effects of chiropractic on pregnant moms. Compare this to the myriad of possible side effects of medications on pregnancy, and chiropractic becomes an obvious choice. As for the babies themselves, a 2015 article published in the journal JMPT found no adverse reactions to chiropractic care. However, a few issues were reported when other health care providers attempted to perform chiropractic care without proper training.

What are the possible benefits to mom?

The most obvious one is pain relief. Any mother can tell you what the added weight and shifting of weight distribution during pregnancy can do to your low back. But much more than that, chiropractic can reduce nausea, help reposition the baby, reduce labor time, and reduce postpartum pain, according to the Henry Ford Center. Again, if the other option is introducing medications into your body while pregnant, the choice seems simple. As an added side effect of chiropractic, you are more natural and at ease with yourself and your body. And this has a huge impact on your developing baby’s brain and nervous system.

Who should be rendering chiropractic care to mom and baby?

Whenever possible, choose someone with experience. By this, I do not necessarily mean a chiropractor who has been in practice a long time, but someone who has seen a lot of babies in their time. Always try to choose someone with a very gentle technique as well. Babies move and realign with the slightest touch. And moms-to-be are already easy to adjust due to a hormone called relaxin — yes, that’s really the name of it! It is released by the placenta and ovaries — so a heavy hand is not needed. If you can find a doctor with advanced training in nutrition and functional medicine then you will also have a resource and an advocate who can guide you to using the best supplements and prenatals. Please do not buy your prenatals based on price or convenience. You and your baby deserve the best quality!

When should babies start with chiropractic care?

I’ll answer your question with another question: When do you want them to start being their healthiest? I have adjusted children as young as 5 minutes old. Many moms bring their babies in four to six weeks after birth when problems like colic begin. But why wait? Many moms actually stop by our office on the way home from their hospital, midwife, or doula for baby’s first adjustment. As hard as delivery can be on the mom, imagine what your baby just experienced throughout the birth process. Regular wellness care for babies can also help prevent things like colic and ear infections. An added note on that: babies with ear infections who receive antibiotics are at increased risk for developing allergies and asthma. This is according to numerous articles, including one published in 2020 in the journal Canadian Family Physician. Antibiotics should never be your first line of therapy.

Can chiropractic help couples with infertility challenges?

In short, yes! A journal review article published in JVSR in 2015 addressed this concern. In every study conducted, women with fertility issues were found to have spinal alignment issues. I can tell you that in my own office we have helped over 30 couples with infertility issues conceive through chiropractic care, and more recently the combination of chiropractic and functional medicine. A condition called PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) can often lead to infertility due to instability of insulin and testosterone but can be managed without drugs using lifestyle changes and supplementation recommendations.

I hope this has been helpful for moms, babies, and future moms. Nothing says health like seeing a healthy mom and newborn bonding for the first time. To me it is one of God’s most beautiful and visible miracles.

Dr. Burtis, D.C., M.S., CFMP, DACBN, has been providing natural healthcare to the Fairmont area at Burtis Chiropractic Center for over 35 years. He uses a combination of chiropractic, nutrition, and functional medicine to help individuals restore and maintain health and healing through individualized care plans. The mission of Burtis Chiropractic Center is to provide transformational healthcare that takes an individual’s life to the next level. We strive to be a solution for families to experience transformational healthcare and help create vibrant and resilient lifestyles that can be passed to future generations.


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