Otitis media (middle ear infections) represents the most frequent reason for physician visits for children under the age of fifteen in the U.S. Otitis media also serves as the most common infection in children for which doctors prescribe antibiotics. Approximately 10% of infants will experience at least one ear infection by the age of three months. 50% of children experience more than three episodes of ear infections by age three. The annual cost associated with the management of pediatric ear infections exceeds five billion dollars!
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) determined that clinical practice guidelines for the management of an ear infection should begin with an initial observation option period. The observation option period refers to deferring antibiotic treatment for 48-72 hours. A concerning survey showed that only 15% of physicians use the observation option. The reason for concern stems from the proven reality that antibiotic treatment causes very damaging effects to gut health and should not be a first option, especially in children unless absolutely necessary. Additional research published in 2010 shows that every infant under the age of 6 months old who consumed two or more rounds of antibiotics experienced an alarming 72% higher risk of asthma.
A prescribed medical course of treatment typically consists of a 7-10 day course of antibiotics. Amoxicillin tends to be the recommended first line therapy for antibiotic management of ear infections. A child experiencing multiple ear infections in one year often receives a surgery recommendation from their doctor. Doctors perform millions of ear tube surgeries on children each year. Many of these procedures result in little to no success.
A common characteristic amongst many ear infection sufferers traces back to a traumatic birth experience. One author has stated that birth trauma and caesarian section children become naturally susceptible to a higher incidence of ear infections. These findings trace back to a lack of cranial molding during the birth process or a small, subtle misalignment of the upper cervical spinal bones called subluxation. Subluxation produces interference in the central nervous system, increasing the susceptibility of an ear infection.
Numerous studies demonstrate the effectiveness of a Chiropractic adjustment to help an infant or child overcome an ear infection. One study showed that 93% of all ear infection episodes improved while under Chiropractic care with 75% of them improving in ten or fewer days. 43% experienced improvement with only one or two treatments. Another study showed that children receiving Chiropractic care experienced fewer overall episodes of ear infections, a reduction in uses of antibiotics, fewer surgeries, and more surgery-free months.
Chiropractors do not seek to treat the ear nor does the adjustment cure the infection. The body already possess tremendous ability to heal or prevent an ear infection. The Chiropractic adjustment scientifically reduces stress from the nervous system, improving immunity and the ability for the body to drain and heal the ear infection. All parents and children benefit from understanding the benefits of Chiropractic adjustments for children with ear infections.
Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2003 Sep;157(9):861-6.The use of osteopathic manipulative treatment as adjuvant therapy in children with recurrent acute otitis media.Mills MV1, Henley CE, Barnes LL, Carreiro JE, Degenhardt BF.