A pediatrician in Australia wants to have all baby chiropractors banned after a sweet little 4-month-old's neck was broken by a chiropractor who was working on the child. According to the pediatrician, "Another few millimeters and there would have been a devastating spinal cord injury and the baby would have either died or had severe neurological impairment with quadriplegia. Everybody was very nervous about this little baby."
Nervous? Sounds positively terrifying. And I admit, when I first heard about people sending their babies -- infants, actually -- to chiropractors, I was pretty shocked. I'm all for ways to avoid "real" medicine (Acupuncture? Bring it on!), but I cringe watching adults getting their necks twisted and snapped back and forth. How could someone do that to a child?! But when I read a bit about it (and, yes, watched a YouTube video), I realized it isn't as scary as it sounds. But still. I'd only send my baby to one under very specific circumstances.
Before we get into it, it's worth noting that the chiropractor who reportedly broke the baby's neck wasn't really given any real repercussions. According to reports, the chiropractor in question was simply told to take more classes in how to treat small children. Seems like a pretty lenient "punishment" for someone who broke an infant's neck. And also part of the problem.
I think if people are going to take their baby to a chiropractor, they should go to someone who specializes in baby chiropractic adjustment, as opposed to going to a regular chiropractor. We take our kids to pediatricians and pediatric dentists; why would this be a case where someone who typically works on adults has license to work on babies? They're not the same.
That should be the change that's implemented -- right now -- to avoid having this ever happen again. Baby chiropractors don't need to be banned altogether, but if someone is going to work on a baby, they should be trained a million times over in that specific area. (Hello, they're right near the spine!)
Now, check out a video of a little cutie getting their back worked on. Not as scary as you'd think, and goes to show that it actually can be really gentle.
Have you ever taken your baby to a chiropractor?
Image via taberandrew/Flickr