Answering Questions on PANDAS, Sensory Processing, and Picky Eaters!

Topics Covered: Pandas | Sensory Processing

Let’s answer the questions parents have asked about PANDAS and everything that goes along with that neuro-immune challenge that so many of our kids face these days. Then we’ll talk about, challenges that are all within the same neurological thread, sensory processing disorder, and picky eaters. 

Where Should You Start?

To get to the root of your kids’ challenges you’ve got to get into their nervous system. We need to talk about the autonomic and central nervous system. The most direct impact and the biggest change you can make into your child’s neurology is through a pediatric chiropractic specialist. 

I am trained and certified in all the biomedical, detox, supplements, etc. But the thing that we have found sticking out like a sore thumb unattended to in nearly every PANDAS case is significantly traumatic birth trauma. What we see again and again with birth trauma is that physical trauma to the vertebrae, muscles, ligaments, what we call it the neuro spinal system in the upper neck and cervical spine is really what leaves these kids susceptible to the ongoing strep infections, opportunistic challenges and the inability to detox and get rid of this stuff. 

Why PANDAS Kiddos Have “Poor Plumbing”

There is absolutely a three-way kind of triangle. It’s the nervous system that really connects and modulates the immune system and digestive system and they go in both directions. But when you create what’s called a subluxation in that cervical region, that subluxation leaves everything stuck. The first thing that gets stuck is what we call the plumbing. Kids with PANDAS have a really tough time plumbing. They cannot get fluid out of their ears, sinuses and throat and into the respiratory system. They can’t get the fluid out of their lymphatics. There is a literal physical obstruction that keeps this fluid and mucus sitting around longer than it should. 

The reason kids with PANDAS don’t handle seasonal changes well and when they get sick it leads to anxiety, sensory challenges, OCD, etc, is because even when they’re not sick, they’re not clear until that subluxation and birth trauma element is addressed. Everything else is limited. Any nutritional or dietary intervention, supplementation, essential oils, homeopathics, anything you try to put into a neurologically stuck and stressed system, is going to have less degree of effectiveness.  

So put that all together. When you add adjustments, it’s got to be the right kind of adjustments. The biggest thing that even chiropractors miss when taking care of PANDAS kids is not adjusting them in the right spots. 

There is a specific technique and targeting that we use through our scans to know exactly where these kids need to be adjusted to give them the most amount of neurological improvement. 

The Need For Frequent Adjustments

The second thing chiropractors miss with PANDAS is not adjusting frequently enough. A lot of chiropractors will just recommend once a month or every other week for chiropractic care. This may sound like a crazy number, but for PANDAS kiddos and the chronic neuroimmune sensitivity and susceptibility, they need to be adjusted twice a week. 

Then during the seasonal and stressful times, we will actually ramp up their adjustments to three times a week and using that number, you get the most incredible results. Not only do the adjustments do amazing things themselves for that child, but when you get the right adjustments at the right place and frequency, which is the absolute art of our PX doc tribe that sets us apart from other chiropractors, everything else works better. The emotional support you’re providing your child sticks and works better and the nutritional dietary homeopathic support has an open channel through the nervous system if it’s not stressed. 

When it comes to PANDAS, the missing link is not just chiropractic care, you’ve got to get pediatric and neurologically focused, subluxation-based pediatric care, and they have to adjust frequently. It makes all the difference in the world. 

We have so many PANDAS kids who used to constantly be on that roller coaster up and down and so sensitive to immune and emotional challenges and seasonal changes. Now that rollercoaster is much more smooth and those kids are living their best lives, which is our favorite thing in the world. 

Picky Eaters and Sensory Processing

Let’s get into picky eaters and sensory processing.  When I first got certified and trained in my early years as a pediatric chiropractor, I learned all about nutrition, supplements, changes and the things that could help in that world of sensory. When we would get a sensory kiddo in, after the family would tell us what was going on, we would throw the book at them. The biggest thing that practitioners, guides and groups miss when helping our sensory perfect storm kids is we’ve got to put things in the right order or sequence. And a lot of times we have to be patient. As a parent, when my kids are struggling, I despise the word patience. Not like my patients, I love my patients, I mean the one with the C in it.  Being methodical and sequential. 

The best way to help a picky eater and sensory kiddo is to actually first root out all of the reasons they’re a picky eater in the first place. Here’s another chiropractic point – sensory processing disorder is a very specific, what we call, pattern of subluxation in the neck. It generally is a subluxation to do with the second cervical vertebrae nicknamed the axis. C2 and C3 are the most overlooked part of adjusting for a lot of chiropractors. Again, I’m not saying that other chiropractors aren’t absolutely fantastic at helping families. But when you talk about PANDAS, sensory and neuro perfect storm kids, there is a level of specificity and detail that you just can’t know about until you have taken care of thousands of these kids or you’re in a training program or mentorship program like we provide to other docs and our interns using that experience to put this together. 

Swallowing happens around that second, third and then mid-cervical. So when there’s a subluxation, those nerves and muscles are sensitive, that is the nature of sensory processing. Certain foods are harder to digest because of those mechanics, the neuro biomechanics interference and inefficiency. This is why you need to get a chiropractor on your team, a PX doc who knows what they’re doing and you can get rid of that subluxation all of the way

You really have to work on chiropractic only for sensory kids for about 90 days before you even want to bother changing diet or supplements at all. It takes that long to get rid of the subluxation memory. We’ve all heard of muscle memory, really what that is is neurological memory, our brain and our central nervous system stores this muscle memory in its hard drive, whether it’s good or bad. So what picky eater sensory kids have are negative memories about digesting certain foods. The more complex, AKA, the more healthy that food, the more difficult it is for an interfered with, subluxated nervous system to chew, digest, assimilate, and absorb. Those inefficiencies that come from subluxation all the way through that system will pile back up and will essentially re-train that kid’s brain to say, now I’m not even going within 10,000 feet of that. 

Chiropractic Must Come First In the Batting Order

You have to get subluxation out of the way first. A lot of chiropractors in our profession are throwing everything at a patient at once. What we really need to do is be sequential and put it in the right batting order. You have to get things moving in the right direction neurologically before you can change things dietary and supplement-wise. 

It can take longer than parents want. Some kids amaze us and they get better in a hot minute, but it generally takes 90 days. If the child is older and has really struggled with this for many, many years, and they’re already 6, 7, 8 years old. And again, I’m going to say bad habits, but it’s literally bad habits in the neuromuscular memory. It’s not by any means bad parenting. It’s bad neurology that you need us to fix. 

I know it can feel like, what am I doing wrong? I can’t get my kid to eat healthily, they just want mac and cheese and sugar. This is why you’ve got to get us on your team to get the nervous system taken care of first. Then your results as awesome wellness, health-minded parent will go through the roof because you’ll have an open pathway for your kids’ neurology instead of a shut, subluxated, tense one.  

Tying PANDAS, Sensory and Picky Eaters Together

So there is really a similar answer for PANDAS, picky eaters, and sensory kiddos. It takes a long, deep, thorough, well-done pediatric neurologically focused chiropractic care plan. You’ve got to get that job done first, then start to add the other elements to it and really good things happen for your child. That’s the essence of The Perfect Storm. 

Whether it’s sensory, PANDAS, or anxiety, you actually have to mirror the way that child got sick to get them well. What we see all the time is that before toxins, infections, emotions, before the delays even showed up, there was that physical birth trauma to the upper neck and brain stem area from birth, or even for a lot of cases from breach and positioning earlier. So even in our natural holistic world, we’re so obsessed with toxins that we forget about the physical neuromotor elements that actually start the neurological, physiological, immunological gastro neurological storm for so many kids. 

So if you want to help your child with their emotions, behavior, diet and immune system, you’ve got to start with the nervous system first. That means the most important practitioner on your kid’s healthcare team is your neurologically focused pediatric chiropractor. If you need help finding one to get the job done, check out PX Docs to find your local Pediatric Experience doctor. 

If you don’t want to put something in the comment stream for privacy, no problem. Send us a direct message. Keep the questions coming. We want to help you with your specific challenges. We love to get specific and be there for you and for your child. So just ask for help and we will be there to give it to you. 


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