By Janaiah von Hassel
In December of last year, I wrote an article “Sensory Sensitivities and Chiropractic Care” which was featured in the most recent edition of Pathways to Family Wellness Magazine. In this article I discussed how my son, Corbin, diagnosed with sensory processing disorder and autism, had improved dramatically with his sensory sensitivities after we began chiropractic care. This coming spring will mark three years that Corbin has been under chiropractic care, as well as three years that I’ve been committed to understanding and sharing the importance of continually checking children for subluxations.
Over the past two years I’ve worked as the co-creator of Kiro Kidz helping other offices reach families in their community using the educational materials we’ve created, as well as resources from the ICPA, Pathways to Family Wellness Magazine, and the research of Keith Wassung.
Helping families understand and connect with chiropractic for their children’s health and watching the unfolding of testimonials has been one of my greatest joys. Having a special needs son myself, I understand the incredible lengths that some families go through to provide their children with relief or improved function. While all children benefit from chiropractic care, it has been a passion of mine to specifically share its value within the special needs community.
Despite all of this, I sadly admit that over the spring and summer we got very inconsistent with care, and before I knew it my children had gone months without seeing our chiropractor. This is its own lesson in life about the importance of not spreading yourself so thin in sharing your message that you forget to practice it. But we’ll chalk this up to a lesson learned.
My family is not all on the same chiropractic schedule. My older son, Landon, generally gets adjusted a couple times a month, and my experience is that when we’re consistent with his care, we see a healthier, happier Landon instead of an anxious kid plagued by seasonal allergies. While it’s not an overnight thing some people do report dramatic improvements from only one adjustment. But when you stop regular care the set-backs are gradual—you don’t miss one appointment and wake up a complete mess. But like a frog in boiling water, you may find that after a few weeks or months your health starts to decline.
My youngest son, Corbin, often needs an adjustment twice a week. I don’t understand why my oldest seems to hold his adjustments longer, but I do know that during physical therapy, and occupational therapy evaluations, Corbin displays many challenges that tell me his body does not function at the same capacity as many children his age. This may be why he needs the extra support, but as weeks turn into months of no chiropractic care I begin to see the resurgence of many unwanted behaviors and discomforts for Corbin.
The first red flag was that he began having discomfort with clothing again. This was something we had struggled with before chiropractic care, but now with our laxed and inconsistent schedule this sign of sensory sensitivities began to rear its ugly head again. I was also seeing increased sleep disturbance, and in a two-month period he had caught 4 head colds. Over the summer our lives had gotten so busy that I was struggling to make time for chiropractic visits. The issues crept up slow enough, and it wasn’t until I was feeling mentally exhausted, frustrated for my children, and wondering why on earth did everything feel so hard that I recognized anything.
I’d love to see a study that shows how much money is lost due to illness and time lost at work, compared to what it cost to keep your family under regular care because I feel convinced it costs more not to have optimal health through chiropractic care.
Often when I’m talking to a family about chiropractic care they will ask “do we have to go forever?” I will answer, “No, you don’t have to, but when you see how much better you feel, you will want to.” Life gets busy, and expensive, and it’s easy to cut corners, but this is one area where it doesn’t pay to take short cuts. I know as a Mom that sometimes it feels like everything is the most important thing. My boys have busy schedules between school, therapies, sports and just the day-in and day-out list of things that MUST get done. It’s so easy to get off schedule, and when we get stuck in the busy work we don’t always notice that we’re starting to drag, feel run down, a little less happy and a little more stressed. That pot of water starts to boil quickly, and if you’re not paying attention your health can take a hit.
Let’s not wait until New Years to make a plan to prioritize our health. If you’ve fallen off the wagon, then I invite you to join me in recommitting to being the best we can be. Call your chiropractor today and schedule that appointment. We all know that the holidays can be stressful, but they can be wonderful too if you’ve got the energy and health to enjoy them.