First of all, this is a bit of a misleading title because the first step in analysis is to check newborns for a misalignment. While the likelihood of a misalignment is very high after a newborn undergoes the delivery process, it remains possible that the newborn is aligned perfectly and would therefore not need to be adjusted.
Whether a baby is delivered vaginally or via C-section, there is a tremendous amount of torque placed on the infant’s head/neck area when entering the world from the womb. When interventions used to assist delivery such as vacuum or forceps are needed, the likelihood of a misalignment increases even more.
Therefore, there is a very high likelihood that the head/neck area is misaligned in a newborn following delivery, and this misalignment can create many detrimental health problems. Here are the benefits for detecting and correcting a misalignment as soon as possible:
1. Improves Brain & Nervous System function
The developing brain of the human being relies heavily on sensory input from the body via the spinal cord. A misalignment at the ‘fuse box’ area can interfere with the brain-to-body communication, thus impeding the function of the nervous system and slowing brain development.
2. Helps Bones grow in alignment
The bones of a newborn are cartilaginous. They do not fully ossify (turn into bone) until the teenage years. If there is an undetected misalignment from delivery, the bones in the spine can grow asymmetrically and this can create imbalances throughout the entire body as it continues to form. Just like building a house first requires a level foundation, a spine requires alignment from the beginning in order to grow and develop properly.
3. It decreases likelihood of Scoliosis & Torticollis
Scoliosis is a lateral curvature in the spine that often continues to progress in adolescence and can potentially compromise the function of various organs of the body. A high percentage of scoliosis cases are caused as a compensation for misshaped vertebra in the spine. Balance in the spinal vertebra can dramatically decrease the chance of developing scoliosis.
Torticollis is a spasm of the neck musculature on one side of the body. This pulls the head/neck in one direction and creates pain and dysfunction in the newborn. Proper alignment can set balance to the muscles and prevent or correct torticollis.
~Noah Kaplan, D.C.