Chiropractic care benefits people of all ages and situations, including children with autism. It might surprise some to learn that chiropractic treatment can be vital to managing autism.
Autism, officially called autism spectrum disorder (ASD), is a developmental disability caused by differences in the brain. Researchers believe there are varying causes for these differences that might be associated with external and internal factors.
People with autism have challenges that include:
Autism is typically recognized early in life, between one and three years of age, although this is not always the case. Most of the time, autism is diagnosed when a child fails to meet certain developmental milestones.
Symptoms last throughout a person’s life.
Children with ASD face several common challenges, including:
Neurological imbalances have an impact on a person’s overall well-being. This includes pain and sensory processing issues, which are common among people with autism. Some believe that physical pain or uncomfortable sensations are linked to changes in a person’s brain and mental health.
It’s no secret that chronic pain is linked to anxiety and depression. Ongoing issues with how the body feels affect a person’s mental health. When the brain experiences long-lasting and intense signs of physical discomfort, it might diminish the neurons in the prefrontal cortex. This reduction in neuron activity makes it more difficult to modulate intense emotions.
Chiropractic care supports neurodevelopmental challenges. Adjustments stimulate and regulate the two automatic nervous systems:
Chiropractors also help parents and other healthcare professionals identify delayed motor and sensory nervous system development.
Chiropractic care helps the brain stay stimulated by keeping the spine in alignment. Adjustments increase or reduce activity in the nervous system. They create harmony and help children with autism better handle their environment. When paired with other therapies, chiropractic care helps children with autism feel less overwhelmed and hyperactive.
Chiropractic care is holistic and all-natural. It offers a functional approach that helps improve the health of the spine, brain, and nervous system without medication or surgery. It can be used in conjunction with other therapies to provide the most comprehensive treatment for children with autism.
Chiropractic adjustments impact the nervous system.
Spinal manipulations regulate the autonomic nervous system. They create a positive effect overall on health and the nervous system. This might play a role in correcting nervous system dysfunction. Regular adjustments benefit brain health in many ways, including pain reduction, improved muscle function, and healthy brain support.
Seeing a chiropractor has a therapeutic effect on the nervous system, which benefits everyone, especially those with autism.
Regular chiropractic care for children with ASD offers many benefits.
First, maintaining healthy spinal alignment helps with a variety of common autism challenges, including:
There might also be a chance that chiropractic care helps with food issues that are common among people with autism. For many, food sensitivities are linked to autoimmune issues, common among people with some forms of autism. Chiropractors can work with patients to identify food sensitivities and manage symptoms of their food intolerances. Chiropractors also work with patients to design healthy diets and dietary supplements to support optimal health.
One case study showed that a 16-year-old autistic child experienced successful outcomes following diversified manual adjusting, pelvic blocking, Upledger cranial methods, dietary supplementation, and trigger point therapy.
A study involving 26 autistic children treated by orthospinology upper cervical care also showed favorable outcomes.
Collaborative care is essential for treating mental or complex physical health diagnoses. It involves sharing perspectives, even if everyone involved does not agree. Together, healthcare professionals familiar with a patient can develop the best and most comprehensive treatment plan for the individual.
Autism requires multidisciplinary management. Chiropractic care is just a part of this. Chiropractors who suspect a pediatric patient might have signs of autism should refer parents to other healthcare providers. Additionally, when seeing a patient with autism, chiropractors should be open to working with therapists and other healthcare providers for the best results.
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