The #1 Most overlooked cause of constipation, colic and gut issues in kids

So many parents report that their child still struggles with gut issues even after trying every prescribed and over-the-counter medication, as well as probiotic, prune juice, and nutritional remedy out there… and they are absolutely exhausted and feel like they’re running out of hope. 

It is also a pretty common occurrence that as kids get older, their gut issues can lead to sensory or focus challenges, emotional dysregulation, anxiety, etc. because of what’s called a gut -> brain connection.  In fact, the way God designed us, there’s a brain – > gut connection where the nervous system controls the gut and its function more than anything else – and that is the number one most overlooked thing yet. 

As pediatric chiropractors, we take care of patients struggling with colic, constipation, indigestion, and gut issues for tiny kids, big kids, and adults all the time. The teenagers don’t always love to talk about poop – okay, they never do – but we do as neurologically focused pediatric chiropractors because we’re able to help so much.

When Traditional Medicine and Natural Remedies Don’t Work

I don’t want to make light of these issues because so many kids and families struggle with this. But out of the different groups we serve – neurodevelopment, neurological or immune challenges – the gut stuff is where we see the fastest, quickest and coolest results when we go through what we do for care. The reason we’re able to get such good results in this world with our care protocols is because we actually get to the root, root cause, unlike the pediatrician’s advice which is usually “ah, we don’t really know what’s causing it, it’s genetic, good luck. Here’s some reflux drugs or Miralax for your baby.”  

First problem right there, Miralax creates so many behavior challenges parents are never usually informed of. Then most families quickly exhaust anything the pediatrician tells them to do with that traditional medication, so they try natural health next. They get online, and type in natural help for constipation, colic reflux, and nutritional intervention. There are a lot of blogs and videos like this that are going to dig into the gut -> brain connection and if your gut has offending food intolerances like gluten, dairy, etc, it’s going to create inflammation and indigestion. So maybe if you remove all the bad stuff and add in probiotics and prunes, that could help? 

About 90% of our families coming in these days with constipation, colic, and gut issues for their child have already exhausted all of this. I know how you feel parents, you’re sick of seeing your child struggle. You know that when their gut is bothering them, their mood, emotions, and behavior are affected as well.  You’re also pretty worn out trying every supplement, essential oil, and natural thing under the sun. 

So, What is the Root, Root Cause?

The reason you haven’t found this neurological component of constipation and colic is that there aren’t enough folks in my profession getting out there and helping you understand this information. 

Here’s all you need to know about the gut as God designed us. The gut is a bunch of muscles. The esophagus, stomach, intestines, and colon, they are all what are called smooth muscles which are the anatomical term for muscles that we can’t control. Muscles on the outside are called skeletal muscles. But the muscles on the inside are completely under the control of what’s called the central or autonomic nervous system. 

The Power of the Autonomic Nervous System

We’re going to call it the autonomic nervous system for this because it runs on autopilot and that central autonomic nervous system is very sensitive to stress. When it gets stressed out and the nervous system goes into fight or flight and gets wound up, that causes constriction. That takes the tone, which is the tension on these muscles, and it tightens it. It’ll tighten the esophagus and the stomach first, which is why babies have so much reflux, indigestion, and colic. Then that tension makes its way through the rest of the neuromuscular gut, and goes into the intestines and colon and locks things in. Then these muscles can’t relax and get things moving.

Digestion is supposed to happen like a slinky. Once we’re done swallowing – muscles we can control – we’re done. Once the food is in, the rest is supposed to happen automatically. There’s a term called subluxation which is a catchall term that neurologically focused chiropractors use to say the nervous system is stuck in stress mode.

The number one trigger of a subluxation is birth trauma, which can be stress during pregnancy, breech positioning, cord wrap, c-section, vacuum extraction, forceps, etc. When we mess with the muscles of the upper neck, upper torso, and skull, we mess with a very important nerve called the Vagus Nerve.

The answer is in the nervous system for 95% of cases we find who’ve exhausted medicine and natural remedies. 

Subluxation, the autonomic nervous system and the vagus nerve are the answer. The reason birth trauma to the neck and brain stem is such a trigger of this neuromuscular digestive storm is that the vagus nerve, also called the wandering nerve, is supposed to leave the brain stem, go down through the muscles of the neck and thorax and it’s job as a sensory nerve (especially in babies), is to activate digestive motility. So when we have subluxation or interference to the function of the vagus nerve, things back up, get stuck, and don’t move through.

How Educating and Chiropractic Care Can Help

So as a parent, what should you do to find out if this is your child? The number one, most empowering thing you can do, learn more. My children, even as a pediatric chiropractor and a wellness guru, have had their struggles, and I know that the one thing I always do, not only for my patients but for my own kids, is to keep reading, keep learning, keep tuning into podcasts and going to trusted sources who have answers about health.

The next thing you can do is find a PX Doc near you in our directory and get your child in to get scanned. We have a set of scans called INSiGHT scans where we can measure the exact function and find the exact location, amount of tension, and subluxation that is on those nerves that go to those muscles.

We will dive deep into your child’s case history to find the exact triggers that were probably there the whole time, but no other practitioner told you about them. We will find those in the case history and explain them. We’ll connect with you and listen to you and hear everything you’ve tried with your kiddo. Then we’ll do our scans and find stress on the autonomic nervous system and that tension and tone on those muscles. From there we’ll put together what’s called a care plan, a neurotonal set of adjustments. They are soft, easy, gentle, safe and they are effective, especially for neuro digestive challenges.

We don’t treat, we don’t cure. We get to the root, root cause.

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