Colic – Your tummy hurts. You have a terrible headache. You can’t sleep and you’re cranky. One more thing: you can’t ask for help because you’re only two weeks old! So you cry. And cry. And cry.
And your parents feel helpless.
Infantile colic was first thought to be merely indigestion. The most widely accepted definition of colic today is “unexplainable and uncontrollable crying in babies from 0 to 3 months old, more than 3 hours a day, more than 3 days a week for 3 weeks or more, usually in the afternoon and evening hours.”
If a baby is inconsolable, it’s hard to know if it’s a digestive disturbance. Consider another explanation. Upon examination, we often find spinal distortions in the baby’s upper cervical spine. These babies are probably suffering from head and neck pain. This is especially common if there was a difficult birth.
A 67% Reduction in Crying
The results of a randomized controlled trial published in the October 1999 issue of the Journal of Manipulative and Physiologic Therapeutics tracked a small group of 50 infants. Half received the drug dimethicone and the other spinal manipulation. At the conclusion of the two-week study, the babies being adjusted saw a 67% reduction in crying and the drug therapy group saw a 38% reduction.
While large scale research results are lacking, and colic is considered a condition that resolves on its own with the passage of enough time, there are many case studies showing improvement, sometimes dramatic, among colicky babies with subluxations.
Not a Cure
Chiropractic isn’t a treatment for colic! If subluxation is present, interfering with the proper function of any part of the body, restoring proper nervous system control often allows the body to heal. This may happen regardless of age and regardless of what the particular symptoms are called.