Being born is stressful work! Imagine being curled up in a tight (yet quiet) space for several months and then being pushed, squeezed and pulled through a small opening to meet bright lights, sounds and a whole world of novelty and stimulation. We all went through some version of this experience. Even though the end result is a beautiful (and hopefully healthy) new baby, the journey can be filled with physical, emotional and chemical stress for baby and mom (and dad too).
Approximately 30 of every 1000 births result in physical birth trauma, including things such as broken bones, oxygen deprivation, and nerve injury to the face or neck and arm. 5% of vaginal births use assisted methods (vacuum or forceps) to help with delivery, which has been associated with skull fractures and bleeding in the brain. 63% of women receive epidurals/spinal blocks to reduce labor pain (epidural usage increases the need for assisted methods, creates a longer labor and increases fetal distress). 32% of births are now by cesarean section, which exposes baby to more chemical stress from surgical procedures and decreases their innate immunity that they receive from a vaginal delivery.
You can see that babies, even before they are fully born are being exposed to a myriad of different stressors. There are 3 types of main stressors: physical, emotional/mental and chemical.
Physical stressors can come from the delivery process, learning to crawl and walk and birth injuries.
Emotional/mental stressors that babies are exposed to can be from not being touched in the right ways, getting too much or not enough stimulation and not having their needs met.
Chemical stressors are from surgical birth procedures, vaccines, environmental toxins, formula additives and more.
Stress effects the nervous system (brain, spinal cord and nerves). The nervous system is your body’s communication network and its development and function is critical to having a healthy body and baby. Everyone has a certain amount of adaptability within their nervous system, some more than others. This is why some people get sick more easily than others or why some have sensitivities to sounds, lights, touch, and foods that others might not have.
The good news is that you can increase your adaptability. This is the pivotal role that chiropractic plays in your baby’s health. Chiropractic works by helping your nervous system work better so that everything inside of your body can function better. It increases the communication between life and your organs, glands and cells in your body, which creates vitality. It helps you work with all of those different stressors that you are experiencing so that instead of creating bound up tension patterns (which later create dysfunction and disease in your body), your body can stay open, communicating, and internally healthy.
Not just sick babies (or people for that matter) can benefit from chiropractic. Anyone who has a spine and has been exposed to daily life stressors benefits from greater levels of ease and communication in the nervous system.
Dr. Amanda Hessel, DC, MS, L.Ac
If you live in the Boulder/Denver area and want more information on how to support your baby’s health naturally please visit: https://bodymindalchemyboulder.com/events-calendar/in-office-talks/
Dr. Hessel will be speaking on this very topic and is teaming with birth doula, Emily Blank who will discuss the therapeutic benefits of essential oils for a calm, happy baby. You must register to attend & class is free. Tuesday September 8th, 2015 at 7p