Shaken Baby Syndrome

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Amniotic fluid problems

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Pelvic floor exercises

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Antenatal Classes

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  • Shaken Baby Syndrome

    Tuesday, 21 July 2015 16:28
  • Amniotic fluid problems

    Thursday, 14 May 2015 12:54
  • Choosing a pre-school

    Friday, 10 April 2015 17:50
  • Newborn reflexes

    Tuesday, 03 March 2015 15:49
  • Mastitis

    Tuesday, 03 March 2015 15:41
  • Pelvic floor exercises

    Wednesday, 11 February 2015 17:20
  • Colic

    Wednesday, 11 February 2015 17:11
  • Antenatal Classes

    Monday, 03 June 2013 09:34
  • Strap-in-the-Future

    Thursday, 30 June 2011 13:52

Preventing repeated middle ear infections

Up until about age 7 the Eustachian tube of the middle ear is horizontal, thereafter it moves into a more vertical position. This horizontal positioning of the middle ear cavity can often hinder fluid drainage from the middle ear resulting in recurring middle ear infections. By age 3, about two-thirds of children have had an acute ear infection and of these children, one-third has had three or more infections.


In response to an ear infection the body produces fluid which accumulates in the middle ear; once the infection has cleared up, the fluid should drain from the middle ear through the Eustachian tube and into the throat. Sometimes this fluid drainage is blocked and the fluid remains in the middle ear cavity for months or even years. Bacteria thrive on this environment and your child may suffer from recurring ear infections until the fluid has drained.


This fluid build-up in the ear can also affect your child’s hearing, which could later impact on developmental skills such as speech and language, resulting in learning difficulties and behavioural problems. Problems with balance and gross motor skills have also been linked to fluid in the middle ear.


In some children drainage may occur after some time, but if the fluid build-up persists it may have to be drained surgically by placing a grommet into the eardrum. A grommet is a small tube inserted into the middle ear that enables drainage of the ear to occur.


How can chiropractic treatment help?

Chiropractics is based on the principle that if any vertebra in the neck or spine is out of alignment, called a ‘restriction’, it could interfere with the nerves that exit at that spinal level. This could result in abnormal functioning of the body system that that nerve supplies.


In the case of ear functioning, if the nerve that supplies the muscle that surrounds the Eustachian tube is ‘mis-firing’ information to that muscle then it could cause the tube to collapse or close. Once the alignment is corrected then the muscle can function optimally allowing the Eustachian tube to function and drain properly.


Restrictions to your child’s vertebrae could result from a number of causes, including:

·         Positioning in the uterus.

·         The birth process, whether Caesar or natural, there are instances where the spine can be stressed and result in restrictions of the spine.

·         Falls, tumbles or bumps.

·         Car accidents or sudden braking.

·         Incorrect posture such as awkward sitting or sleeping positions.


The chiropractic assessment and treatment

A typical chiropractic appointment will involve taking a detailed history, starting with your pregnancy, the birth process and baby’s health and development.


An examination of all the joints in the body, including the spine will follow; this will determine if any restrictions are present. Muscles will be checked for tightness and nerve function and reflexes will be tested.


If tight muscles are found, these will be gently massaged to release that tightness and any restrictions found will be corrected to restore normal joint and nerve function using a chiropractic adjustment. This involves applying a gentle force to the area of the spine that is not moving. Many babies sleep through this process and with toddlers we can make a game of it. Usually when we release the joint a soft popping sound may be heard, similar to clicking your knuckles and this may give children not expecting to hear anything a fright causing them to cry.


Generally, 3 to 6 treatments may be needed to reinforce the new position of the joint but this depends on the age of the child, the severity of the condition and the child’s response to treatment.


Case study

In a research trial conducted by a chiropractor in association with an ear, nose and throat specialist, children with fluid build-up in the middle ear underwent a series of chiropractic adjustments to improve alignment of their spines. Results showed that 58,3% to 64,3% of the children’s middle ears had either partly  or completely drained after chiropractic treatment.

To make an appointment with Dr Sonja Kneppers phone 011 478 2346 or go to