Understanding Your Child's Nervous System: The Center of Health
Keeping your kids healthy usually means serving fruits and vegetables, exercise, sleep, and checkups. But, did you know that your child's developing nervous system controls most of their body's functions, like blood pressure and breathing? A healthy nervous system leads to good digestion, metabolism, heart rate, gland functions and much more. Understanding your child's nervous system will help you read your child's signs of health and illness, many of which begin and end with this important system.
Listen Up: Your Nervous System Is Talking to You
The nervous system is made up of your organs (brain, spinal cord, nerve cells, sense organs) and several systems of control -- one for responding to the environment; one for maintaining bodily functions while at rest; and one entirely dedicated to the bowels and digestion. Billions of nerve cells communicate constantly between the brain and every other part of the body, helping regulate, stimulate and relax areas when needed.
Responsible for much more than just sensing feeling on your skin, the nervous system prepares the body to interact with the world by quickening your heart rate or flooding you with a burst of adrenaline when you feel scared. It also dilates your pupils in response to light, causes you to sweat when you need to cool down and floods you with sleep hormones when it grows dark. Every time your body "tells you" something, like when you're hungry or need to empty your bladder, that signal is coming from your nervous system.
Perhaps most important in a growing child are all the nerve cells (neurons) in the brain, which are making connections every time they learn new information and establishing pathways to maintain that knowledge. Children are forming and processing memories through their neuron connections, moving information into long-term storage. The same system that regulates children's bodies also regulates their brains. It's no wonder the nervous system is seen as the center of health and wellness.
Maintaining Nervous System Health
With all the ways the nervous system affects health and well-being, it makes sense to care for it with regular attention, the same way you would your eyes, teeth or heart. When your spine is out of alignment, the channels of communication your body depends on to signal necessary functions can become blocked or distorted. If your brain and body aren't communicating, you can't function optimally, and your body can start to "tell you" all sorts of things are wrong.
In children, these problems can manifest in poor sleep, allergies, asthma, digestive problems and frequent illness. If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, or pain, stiffness or decreased mobility, spinal alignment can improve the nervous system function and help resolve a host of ailments.
Maintaining optimal nervous system health doesn't need to wait until you're sick or injured. Many parents report seeking chiropractic care for illness prevention and ensuring overall wellness. Removing the stressors and irritants to the nervous system frees up the countless channels children's bodies need to regulate themselves, respond appropriately to the environment and grow.
Spinal adjustments that allow the nervous system to function without interference can help children show resilience to illness and infection, prevent obstructions to digestive health, improve sleep by relieving tension or pain and helping your child relax, and promote healthy brain development.
Contact Dr. Aaron Wahl, a Chiropactor in Chesterfield and a Chiropractor for Kids, today for more information or to schedule an appointment.