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Infantile Colic and Chiropractic Care



“According to published studies infants with colic respond favorably with chiropractic adjustments”

By Jennifer Peet DC, Certified CBP


Infantile colic can be as troublesome for the parents as the child experiencing the condition. This condition is characterized by a multitude of symptoms, the most evident of which being episodic fussiness that lasts for hours, even days, and does not respond to simple comforting methods. To make matters more complicated, it rarely responds to traditional health care. This leaves many parents troubled as the infant’s episodes of crying and fussiness continue.


Symptoms often include uncontrollable crying during which the infant appears to be in pain and pulls his/her legs up. At times the child’s abdomen will be hard.


Occasionally, the passage of flatus will give relief. Attacks may last for hours. In analyzing the colicy infant it is important to rule out central nervous system damage, extremity fractures, and abdominal problems such as a hernia or intussusception. Obliviously, any of these conditions may cause the infant to cry uncontrollably and would require a medical referral. Even in the rare case that one of these conditions is present, it is in the best interest of the child to begin chiropractic care on the initial visit if vertebral subluxations are found so that the process of restoring normal nerve supply may begin.


Two chiropractic studies relating to infant colic are of particular interest. The first study, was done by a group of Danish chiropractors, revealed positive results when spinal adjustments were rendered. The second study involved a group of 316 infants with colic of which 94% reported successful resolution within the first two weeks of care.


Although chiropractic care does not treat the symptoms of colic, the author has found, after adjusting hundreds of babies, that most will respond within the first few weeks. Why does chiropractic work when other methods fail? It’s simple really. Nerve supply is vital to proper function in every system of the body including the stomach, intestines and other abdominal organs. The sixth to ninth or tenth thoracic vertebrae house the gastric sympathetic preganglionic fibers. They reach the celiac plexus via the sympathetic trunk ganglia and the greater and lesser thoracic splanchnic nerves.


Vertebral subluxations causing nerve int