The sooner the better!
With the exception of organic pathologies that require priority medical care, it is advisable to bring your child to the osteopath as soon as possible. The goal of early treatment is to avoid that imbalances or blockages cause repercussions. It is much easier to prevent than to treat. It is therefore advisable to consult an osteopath specialized in pediatrics as soon as you leave the maternity ward. For the mother who has given birth (post-partum), it is advisable to wait 3 weeks / 1 month before consulting an osteopath for vaginal deliveries and a little more in the case of caesarean sections.
The reasons for your child's consultation can be numerous, here are the main ones:
First of all, rest assured that osteopathic consultations for your child are nothing like consultations for adults. When an osteopath manipulates a baby, the techniques are very gentle and do not hurt your child at all. The osteopath will mobilize gently and will not force, we will wait until the little one lets go.
The osteopath's role is to look at the patient's entire body, from head to toe or from foot to head. His goal is to detect all the imbalances of the body which could cause dysfunctions, imbalances later.
It is necessary to make sure that the neck is mobile, because if your child does not turn his head well on one side, he will tend to prefer the side where he turns well, so his head will be more likely to flatten on the side where he turns well. Many parents think that their baby turns his head well but in reality a baby turns his head after the shoulder and it is not always obvious to realize this loss of mobility.
In this area, the osteopath will also check your child's sucking and will work on the neck muscles and the palate in order to facilitate sucking.
In the womb, the baby has taken a certain position and was folded on itself, in a fetal position. The osteopath's role will be to "unfold" your child by gently mobilizing the pelvis, hips, knees and feet.
Often one hip is less mobile than the other, it is necessary to remove the blockages that prevent the good mobility of this hip in order to avoid that compensations settle or that the blockage is permanent. In the same way, the feet can go inwards, the osteopath will then remove the blockages but above all will give you small simple exercises to do in order to optimize the recovery.
In the case of a breech baby, this step is essential!
In utero, your child takes a certain position in the mother's womb. At birth, he keeps a preferential side that will disappear. Unfortunately, in many cases, the baby keeps a preferential side and will tend to lean more to one side than the other. It is important to rectify this so that it does not cause problems later on and to avoid repercussions on the spine and the rib cage.
At birth, the digestive system starts to work, so many problems arise. Reflux, colic, etc. are very frequent. The osteopath's role will be to mobilize your child to remove all the causes likely to cause this type of disorder, such as hypomobility of the lumbar vertebrae, which could have repercussions on the nerves that run from the spinal column between each vertebra and which are responsible for the innervation of the digestive system. Prevention is optimal, it is much easier to avoid a problem than to treat it once it has occurred...
The pediatric osteopathy consultation takes about 45 minutes. This allows the parents to ask all the questions, especially those that they do not dare to ask their doctor, whom they see quickly.
There is no precise book to be a good parent except for the information on the health book and it is not your job.
Your osteopath is there to give you all the advice that will facilitate your life and that of your baby. So, do not hesitate to ask your practitioner and remember that there is no taboo....
Eventually, depending on you and what you think is most appropriate for your child's rhythm:
Currently in France, the level of osteopathy schools is still very disparate: 9 schools out of 36 approved by the Ministry of Health and Sports are recognized RNCP1 which gives them a level of bac + 5 while the others are at the level of bac +3!
Thus, it is already not easy to find a good osteopath...
For an osteopath specializing in pediatrics it is even more difficult because many osteopaths claim to be specialized because they have had some courses in their years of study. It is essential for an osteopath who wishes to work with babies to take a specialization course in pediatrics.
For your baby, consider consulting osteopaths specialized in pediatrics, do not hesitate to ask your osteopath about his or her training.