Treatment for Colic, Latching, Constipation, Gas and Sleep Difficulties
Newborns/infants often cry, and it is a normal response to healthy development, their lungs become stronger, their head cranial bones become decompress and more symmetric, and overall it is a normal natural instinct for newborns.
Their new body is trying to adapt to a new life outside the mother's body.
Their inmature systems are still developing, and are sensitive to changes in their environment.
But what happens in some newborns/infants when they seemed colickly and cry daily for long hours without any console, irritable, reflux, not sleeping enough, gassy and constipated.
In some babies, the birth process can be a stressful and even traumatic. As the baby is pushed through the birth canal, it undergoes forces of twisting and turns of the head and body. Adding to this, if the labour is prolonged and complications arise, and even before the beginning of labour, in late pregnancy the baby is already undergoing some pressures and moulding forces. Some babies that are born even with caesarean may still have compressive forces of the head.
During the beginning of labour, when the baby is in the proper position, the head of the baby experiences pressure and compressive forces as it is pushing against the cervix during dilations and contractions, and as it descends through the birth canal, with the water still intact, the baby's head still enduring some compressive forces, and if water is broken, these forces can even be greater.
When the baby is in a breech or abnormal position for a long period, their bodies may suffer some compression forces already in that position , the birthing process can become even more stressful and traumatic for the unborn baby.
When obstetric instruments like forceps or vacuum are used to facilitate the birthing process, the baby's head may be affected. Adding to all of these, the health state of the mother, her emotional state, unborn infants can be influenced by the health and emotions of the mother. if the mother have a difficult pregnancy, baby may be also very irritable and unsettled.
How flexible and symmetric her pelvis is for labour will influence the whole process. If there are history of falls or strains or accidents affecting the pelvis, it will affect how easy or how difficult the process of labour would be.
Unborn infants may sense and feel the emotioanl state of the mother during pregnancy.
UNRESOLVED COMPRESSIVE FORCES LEADING TO HEALTH ISSUES
Some of these compressive forces may resolve as the baby grows, but some of the compressive forces may remain and can affect normal structural and functional development, compressing nerves and affecting normal system's function of the newborns.
Face and body may have some small asymmetries and these can be carried to childhood and adulthood if not resolved. But the unresolved issues from these forces are not just asymmetries, it can also affect the new born with breastfeeding issues as the suckling function is impaired, latching and feeding difficulties ,digestive disturbances (Colic, Constipation, Gas, and GER or Reflux), irritability and disturbed sleeping patterns, waking up at different times throughout the night, congenital torticollis, shoulder injury or distocia, plagiocephaly or asymmetrical distortion of the head.
Tongue tie is another issue that newborn can present, affecting latching and breastfeeding, besides the lingual frenum that restrict normal mobility of the tongue and affect proper latching, the tongue has many connections to different areas of the body, thus working locally on the tongue and working on distant areas of the body can affect significantly tongue flexibility and benefit lactching and breastfeeding. But in some cases, tongue tie has to be released by a qualified Dentist with the use of laser technology and with prescribed specific exercises from the Dentist for the parent to do on the baby daily.
These unresolved compressive issues may lead to childhood frequent ear infections, behavioural problems, hyperactivity, sinus problems, learning difficulties, dyslexia among other impairments.
Other conditions that infants and children can benefit from these therapies are ADD/ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Cerebral Palsy, Chronic ear infection, Emotional difficulties, Failure to trive, Hearing disorders, Hydrocephalus, Lactation issues, Motor coordination impairments, Seizures, and Speech disorders.
OSTEOPATHY RELEASES COMPRESSIONS AND RESTRICTIONS
Osteopathy can help resolve many of the issues of newborns, especially if they have had a difficult birth, Osteopathic Manual Practitioners can harmonize baby's body and their systems, resolve compressive forces,either on the head or through the body including the spine and pelvis with a very light touch.
Osteopathic Manual Practitioners do use different approaches with the newborn, including light touch, unwinding, enhance innate motility of organs, Cranial Osteopathy, Craniosacral Therapy, Visceral Manipulation, Intention and Bioenergy work to release restrictions and compressions.
Some Cranial nerves are decompressed to facilitate the healing process and the balance of the Autonomic nervous system.
During an infant osteopathic session, parents are invited to participate in the treatment as it will benefit and relax both, parents and infant.
Safe light touch is employed during a session. Usually 2-3 sesssions are needed to harmonize and release tension thoroughout their bodies.
Parents do comment that their babies sleep better, become more calm, their feeding and bowels movements improve significantly. In some other complex cases, babies may need more treatments.
Gerardo Ponce is a Registered Osteopathic Manual Practitioner, Acupuncturist, and Massage Therapist, holding a BioScience Degree, He has extensive clinical experience in Manual Medicine.
Cranial Osteopathy for Infants, Children, and Adolescents, A practical Handbook, Nicette Sergueef, 2007.
Cranial Techniques and Advanced Treatment Protocols in Pediatric Osteopathy, An Osteopathic Approach, Maureen N. Maher
Osteopathy for Children, 3rd edition, Elizabeth C. Hayden D.O. 2008