Is it safe to take children to Brighton Chiropractors?

Our chiropractors in Brighton see lots of children with back, neck and shoulder pain. Heavy school bags, poor posture and over-use of screens all contribute to spine and muscle issues in school-age children.

Unfortunately, this discomfort is frequently overlooked by parents, as it may not be talked about at home, although the mechanical causes of back pain are similar to those afflicting adults. If your child does complain of back or neck aches, what should you do to help them? And is it safe to take them to see a chiropractor? Read on for expert advice on chiropractic treatment for children – and what you can do at home to make things better.

Children over 6 years are usually pretty good at communicating when they need to, but may not be well equipped with the vocabulary to describe exactly what they’re experiencing in their bodies. All kinds of issues can cause headaches and backaches and growing up is certainly one of them. Where only 5% of 3-year olds suffer from headaches, that percentage increases to 50% of children going through puberty. 

Chiropractic treatment for children is safe and effective

Studies have shown that chiropractic treatment is not only safe but effective for this age group, resulting in fewer days of reported pain with reduced impact on school and sports, and less pain medication required. Your chiropractor will be careful to discuss your child’s problems in a simple and friendly way – and you, the parent, will of course be present throughout the consultation. The techniques used in paediatric chiropractic are similar (but much lighter) to those we use for adult patients. These include manual manipulation or mobilisation to free stiff joints and muscles or adjusting vertebrae or joints very gently using either the hands or an instrument designed to deliver a firm tap. Your child will also be advised on how to continue their care at home through exercises and stretching. This is where you’ll be particularly involved by encouraging them to actually carry out the advice.

Babies and very young children (under 2 years old) can also benefit from chiropractic treatment but this is a very specialised field. Persistent crying, failure to suckle or sleep are all indications that there might be an issue that chiropractic treatment could help with. If you’d like to discuss your baby or toddler with our senior chiropractor, we’ll be happy to arrange a free telephone consultation.

What can you do to help your child’s back pain at home?

If you spot your child doing their homework perched on their bed, it’s time to make sure they have a desk or table to use. They need to be able to sit and study just as you do when working at a desk – that means, feet flat on the floor, computer screen on a level with the eyes and forearms easily able to rest on the work surface. A chair that supports the spine and lumbar region is also necessary.

We all know about ‘Tech Neck’ by now. This age group is constantly glued to mobile phones or other hand-held devices – perhaps that’s an inevitable part of modern life. Encourage your child to hold their device at eye level or show them how to support their elbow on a cushion to raise it up, avoiding the unbalance and strain caused by looking down for hours.

You can encourage general good posture not just by repeatedly telling them to ‘sit up straight’ but by providing good seating which supports the lower back, encouraging them to walk about every half-hour or so (dare to interrupt those video game marathons!) and make sure their mattress is supportive. The backpack they have to lug about when they’re at school also needs to be suitable. Don’t let it be overloaded and make sure it can be worn with an equal distribution of weight (watch out for broken straps).

If you’d like to take the first steps to relieving your child’s back pain, book in an appointment with us. We’re always happy to help.