Can Chiropractic Genuinely Help With Earaches and Ear Infections?

pediatric chiropractic

The most widespread purpose for visits to a pediatrician is earache. By the age of three years, more than 70 percent of children will have had at least one experience of earache, and about a third will have had more than three incidents. What you might not know, however, is that earache is also the most common occurrence for children under the age of five years to be taken to the chiropractor’s office.

How Chiropractic Care Relates to Earache and Ear Infections

When a child who has an earache is identified as having a middle ear infection by the pediatrician, the standard treatment involves a course of antibiotics. New analysis, however, has determined that this type of treatment is often misguided. Antibiotics are only effective against bacterial pathogens, and due to the fact that the child’s middle ear infection may be caused by a virus, antibiotics are ineffectual. This may be the explanation for a child’s chronic ear infections.

One of the purposes of a Honolulu chiropractor is to ascertain if the reason for the body’s ineffectiveness in combatting the earache or ear infection is generated by irritation of the small nerves in the spine (called free nerve endings).

When these nerve endings are irritated, an abnormal tension is created in the small muscles of the neck. This muscle tension can place pressure on the lymphatic drainage ducts resulting in inadequate drainage from inside the ear, hence keeping the body from its ability to naturally rectify the problem. Furthermore, balance can also be affected.

Inadequate drainage of lymphatic ducts can be diagnosed by a chiropractor if there is increased tension in the neck and paraspinal muscles on the side with the earache. In addition, the chiropractor will check to see which spinal vertebrae are either slightly out of alignment or not moving within their normal range. There are a variety of reasons for such aproblem as the result of the many bangs, jolts, and falls most children undergo growing up. Restoration of normal lymph drainage is usually accomplished with a short regimen of treatments that include spinal adjustments and manipulation of the neck muscles. If your child is suffering from an earache or an ear infection, contact your Honolulu chiropractor as soon as possible.

Advanced Research and Guidelines

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), ear infection, the most widespread childhood disease second only to the common cold, accounts for nearly 30 million doctor visits each year. Furthermore, at least 6 million courses of antibiotics are causelessly prescribed for the affliction.  Recently, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) released new guidelines for treating pediatric ear inflammation, and specifically recommended a period of “watchful waiting” since, in many cases, infections clear up on their own, without medication.

The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) commends the AAP on the guidelines and emphasizes that chiropractic treatment is a “good first option” for treating ear infection conservatively. “Doctors of chiropractic have been treating children for decades with great success – helping them to avoid painful ear infections, antibiotic overuse and resistance, and ear tube surgery,” said ACA President Donald Krippendorf, DC. “Particularly when dealing with young children, drugs and surgery should be an absolute last resort.”

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