by Dr. Mackenzie Romero, DC
The World Health Organization recommends that infants receive their nourishment exclusively from breast milk for the first six months of life. After six months, breast milk should remain a staple of their nutrition as other foods are incorporated into the diet for up to two years of age or beyond. That sounds simple and straightforward, but breastfeeding can be a challenge, as all new moms know.
Many problems that a new mother may encounter such as plugged milk ducts, sore breasts, or infections can be resolved by a visit with a licensed lactation consultant. But there are other common problems that chiropractic can help with, such as inability for the infant to properly latch on, a weak suck and the preference for one breast over the other.
As you may know, chiropractic analyzes and corrects areas of misalignment in the spine and musculoskeletal system. The spine houses the spinal cord and has exiting nerves that transmit information between the brain and all parts of the body. Altered vertebral joint position and aberrant motion cause stress to the nerve communication. This is known as subluxation. Correcting the misalignments restores motion and removes impedance to the function of the nerves by directly and precisely realigning the vertebral column. Proper alignment of the entire body allows for full potential.
What does all that have to do with breastfeeding? You may not realize it, but beautiful newborn babies have experienced a significant amount of bodily stress. In the womb during the later stages they become quite cramped for a long period of time. Then, of course, there’s the birth experience. Both vaginal births and Cesarean sections can be traumatic for newborns, which is why newborns often experience subluxation.
If you have a newborn, or know of a newborn having trouble breastfeeding, and a lactation professional has already been consulted, it would be very beneficial to have the infant checked by a chiropractor who has experience helping newborns with breastfeeding issues. The doctor of chiropractic will take a thorough history of the pregnancy and birth process to understand what forces the newborn may have encountered. The visit will include complete physical examination of the newborn with a focus on the alignment of skull bones, the shape of the roof of the mouth, the alignment of the cervical spine (neck), reflexes and suck. With everything taken into account, very gentle and specific chiropractic adjustments are made to the spine and specific corrections are made to skull bones. Often, improvement in breastfeeding is observed after only one session of care.
A World Health Organization document from the 55th World Health Assembly in April of 2002 notes, “Exclusive breastfeeding from birth is possible except for a few medical conditions, and unrestricted exclusive breastfeeding results in ample milk production.” Employing the services of a chiropractor and ensuring that subluxation is removed after birth gives the newborn the best start in life by enhancing full body function and improving the ability to comfortably breastfeed.
Dr. Mackenzie Romero, DC, and her husband Dr. Oscar Romero, DC, own Romero Family Chiropractic, located at 12915 Jones Maltsberger Road, Suite 603. Dr. Mackenzie Romero is certified in Webster Technique, a specific chiropractic analysis and adjustment for pregnancy that focuses on the pelvis. Both doctors have experience helping infants with breastfeeding issues. To learn more, visit www.RomeroFamilyChiropractic.com or call 210-531-6100.