top of page

Birth Trauma - What Is It and What Can We Do?

Bringing a new life into the world is often a miraculous and joyous occasion. However, behind this celebration lies a reality that is rarely discussed - birth trauma. Birth trauma refers to any physical or psychological injury sustained by an infant during the process of labor and delivery. While much attention is rightly given to the well-being of mothers during childbirth, the impact of birth trauma on babies, particularly on their neurological development, is often overlooked. We are going to delve into what constitutes birth trauma, its role in causing neurological interference, and the distinction between necessary and unavoidable trauma. Additionally, we will explore the role of pediatric and prenatal neurologic chiropractic care in addressing and mitigating the effects of birth trauma on infant health and maternal health.

Birth trauma encompasses a wide range of experiences that can affect infants before, during, and after birth. Neurological interference, in this context, refers to disruptions or injuries to the nervous system that can occur as a result of birth trauma. These disruptions can have long-lasting effects on a child's physical and cognitive development.

Neurological trauma in the womb may occur due to various factors such as maternal stress, exposure to toxins, or complications during pregnancy. Think stress on mom = stress on baby. This stress in the form of stress hormones and a sympathetic dominant nervous system transfers to the baby through the umbilical cord; which is not only the nutrient source but also the neurologic circuit between mom and baby. These issues can adversely affect the developing nervous system of the baby, laying the groundwork for potential challenges post-birth as well as prime the nervous system of the baby to start off with their gas pedal (sympathetic nervous system) stuck on before even being born.

During labor and delivery, infants are particularly vulnerable to trauma. Common causes include prolonged labor or birth interventions such as forceps or vacuum extractors. These events can result in a range of injuries, from minor bruising to more severe conditions and locking that infant into a sympathetic dominant storm.

The impact of birth trauma on neurological interference cannot be overstated. The delicate structures of the nervous system are highly susceptible to injury, and disruptions during the birthing process can have profound consequences. Injuries to the brain or spinal cord, for example, can impair motor function, sensory processing, and cognitive abilities. The upper neck in particular is very vulnerable during this time and a very common location for neurologic insult. This can have a significant impact to the nervous system as a whole due to some important neurologic structure in the area, the vagus nerve and the brainstem, which can result in global disruption to the nervous system as a whole as well as a multitude of various systems in the body.  Moreover, birth trauma can disrupt the delicate balance of neurotransmitters and hormones in the infant's brain, potentially leading to neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); conditions which manifest later in childhood.

While we want to try to avoid as much trauma during the prenatal and birth process as possible, It's essential to distinguish between necessary and unavoidable trauma during childbirth. Some degree of stress on the infant is inevitable as they navigate the birth canal. This natural process helps stimulate the baby's respiratory and circulatory systems, preparing them for life outside the womb.


However, there are instances where trauma occurs due to medical interventions or complications that could have been prevented. It is important to note that whenever there is risk, there NEEDS to be choice and there is choice in all interventions even if it may not be hospital “policy. ”

We understand that parents often find themselves grappling with worries and uncertainties, especially when it comes to their newborns' health and all that birth traumas encompass, and I want you to know its ok. We are here to help with neurologic chiropractic care. Chiropractors specializing in pediatric and prenatal care recognize the weight of these concerns and undergo extensive training to provide the most gentle and compassionate care possible. We prioritize the well-being and comfort of our tiny practice members and expectant mothers above all else, approaching each adjustment with a deep understanding of the delicate nature of infancy.

Birth trauma can cast a shadow of worry over even the most joyous of moments, leaving parents feeling overwhelmed and uncertain about their child's future. It's natural for parents to worry about the potential long-term effects on their child's health and development. However, neurologic chiropractic care offers a beacon of hope amidst these concerns. By providing a holistic approach to address the effects of birth trauma, chiropractors can offer a sense of relief to parents allowing infants to thrive and parents to find solace in their child's journey to recovery.

Through gentle and non-invasive adjustments and craniosacral therapy, chiropractors can help restore proper function of the nervous system. By reducing tension and interference in the nervous system and skull, chiropractic care may alleviate symptoms associated with birth trauma, such as feeding difficulties, sleep disturbances, and developmental delays. Chiropractors can provide guidance and support to parents on infant care practices that promote optimal neurological development.

While the road ahead may seem daunting, it's important for parents to remember that there is hope for your child's future. With the right support, infants can overcome the challenges associated with birth trauma and thrive. Pediatric neurologic chiropractic care plays a crucial role in this journey, offering a compassionate and understanding approach to help infants process through birth trauma and future traumas they may encounter. By addressing underlying issues and restoring balance to the nervous system, chiropractors pave the way for a lifetime of health and well-being, offering parents reassurance and peace of mind as they witness their child's resilience and strength unfold.

Birth trauma is a significant issue that deserves more attention and understanding. While mothers often bear the brunt of childbirth-related challenges, it's essential to recognize the impact on infants as well. By raising awareness and promoting support for both mothers and babies, we can work towards improving birthing practices and making sure that families have choices when it comes to labor and delivery. It's time to shine a light on this often-overlooked aspect of childbirth and prioritize the well-being of all involved.


17 views0 comments


bottom of page