otitis media and chiropractic
If you follow us on Facebook, you should be able to find our recent post regarding a very popular health topic that is troublesome for parents. Children are challenged by high incidence of ear infections and the statistics are shocking. “ Approximately 10% of infants by 3 months of age will have had an ear infection. 50% of children by 3 years of age will have had more than 3 episodes of acute otitis media!!”
In the northeast, August is the last month of summer. Soon we will begin to see shorter days, cooler nights, and changes in the leaves on the trees. As we head into the next couple of months you will begin seeing more advertisements on television, in drug stores, magazines, on the internet, etc. about boasting your immunity. You may be wondering, why am I seeing this post now? Because we want you to be prepared and knowledgeable when it comes to the health of your children because incidence of ear infections increases during the winter months.
The manner in which ear infections develop so frequently in children is because of Eustachian tube dysfunction combined with viral and/or bacterial infection, as well as various predisposing factors. Children have Eustachian tubes which are oriented differently than adults which can cause the fluid to pool within the middle ear, leading to infections. If the Eustachian tube is not functioning correctly then it is not protecting the middle ear, draining fluid away from the middle ear, or regulating pressure within the ear.
The function of the Eustachian tube is determined by a small muscle in the head called the tensor veli palatini. This small muscle has a few different jobs, one of them is dilating the Eustachian tube.
Research has shown that chiropractic care can help these cases if the cause of the problem is due to a misalignment in the upper spine. A vertebral subluxation or misalignment in the upper spine can cause irritation to the nerves that supply the tensor veli palatini muscle, changing the muscle tone, giving the muscle the inability for proper contraction, in turn affecting how the Eustachian tube dilates in order to drain fluid from the ear or regulating pressure in the ear. A vertebral subluxation in the upper spine can also have a negative effect on the immune system which increases the risk of ear infection.
Thank you for reading. Check back soon for information about boasting your family’s immune system.