As a Chiropractor, I often get ask questions from parents of autistic children on how a chiropractor can help?
During my time at the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College, I had the opportunity to intern at the Muki Baum Treatment Centre for children with complex disabilities, in Toronto, ON. At Muki Baum, the staff understood the importance and could see the benefits that chiropractic care had on these children, many of whom had autism. After treatment, teachers would report improvement in mood and attention levels, less aggression and more tolerance to physical stimulation and touch. In fact, chiropractic re-assessments showed improvements in physical strength, balance, mobility and coordination.
The importance of chiropractic care is essential to children with disabilities. These kids often have hypotonia (low muscle tone), poor posture, decreased body awareness and as a result have more pronounced musculoskeletal problems such as restrictions on movement and stiff joints. Furthermore autistic kids are often have sensory stimulus deficits, either hypo (too little) or hyper (too much) sensitive. Receiving the proper chiropractic adjustments can be like hitting the information reset button on the nervous system. Either calming or turning up the nervous system when the body requires.
Children with developmental disorders can benefit from chiropractic treatment focused to improve joint mobility, gross motor training, core muscle strengthening, vestibular (balance) exercise and sensory stimulation. However, chiropractic care is only part of the treatment puzzle. Other avenues of care including biochemical, nutritional, cognitive and emotional components should be addressed to offer the best possible outcome for the patient.
From a health care provider’s point of view, without a properly functioning nervous system, every other step is leading you in a circle.Many autistic children have been experiencing tremendous improvements with the help of chiropractic care. Chiropractors help children with a condition called subluxation. Subluxations are misalignments found in the spine that place endangering pressure on the nerves and nerve system.The spine houses the nervous system, the most important organ system in the body.This system controls everything you do, every communication that takes place, every action you make, even how you digest food.The brain is the starting gate, then the signals run down your spine to the organ it is sending the messages to. When stress is placed onto the nerve system, the body won’t function at its highest level.
The goal of the chiropractor for an autistic child is to perform gentle adjustments to help realign the spine and take stress off the nervous system.The adjustments do not cure autism; they do not cure anything.The adjustments allow the body to function at its optimal level, without nervous system interference. When that is able to happen, a child can have the ability to reach their full potential. Including chiropractic care for an autistic child can help improve the quality of life, by relieving some of the symptoms of their disease.