Monday, September 15, 2008

Gwen and Dr. Dave

Under the heading of "I'll try anything once..."

At our last meeting, which was cut short because Gwen was So Not In the Mood, KG noted that Gwen is a very rigid and tense baby. She wondered if she might be hypertonic, and suggested taking her to a chiropractor to be checked out. I found this interesting. Here Chris and I had always assumed that the frequent bouts of intense pain crying were due to a gastrointestinal issue, but we had never considered a musculo-skeletal cause. Anyway, I agreed to do so, and KG gave me the name of a local chiropractor - Dr. Dave - who specializes in children and infants. In fact, he spent several years in a clinic in Australia that did only pediatrics, so he's very experienced with the smaller set.

I took Gwen for her appointment today, and I think it was a positive experience. Not because Gwen didn't cry - she did, of course, because everything from the examination to the adjustments were weird and alien to her - but because she got over it really quickly. Usually after beginning to cry she will snivel on for a good long while to make sure everyone knows of her displeasure, but in this case as soon as I pulled her in for a soothing cuddle, she was over it and even flirted with the doc over my shoulder. If she forgave him that quickly, I suppose I can too.

The chiropractor did identify some issues, which is no surprise to me - at this point I basically assume that any specialist is going to have a particular reason related to his or her field that explains all of Gwen's fussy behaviours. Or to word it more cynically, what are the chances that the chiropractor would examine her and say, "Nothing wrong here, please take your baby and your money away and never come back!"? Be that as it may, I'm open to his interpretation and willing to pursue this for a few weeks at least, by which time we should be able to see some improvement.

According to Dr. Dave, Gwen's sacrum does not move. The reflexes in her feet are blocked because of this - when he tapped them with his mallet, they didn't respond at all. Further, her shoulders are quite locked up (the right worse than the left) and the top of her neck is out of whack as well (highly technical terms here, I know). He postulated that the problem with her neck might be causing the feeding problems, as the misalignment would cause her to want to put her head back, but she can't feed in that position; thus she would always be fighting a battle between her hunger and her desire not to be in pain. Which would cause her to feed-feed-feed-pull off, feed-feed-feed-pull off. Sounds bloody familiar, that does.

He did some adjustments and asked us to come back on Thursday for more. It will be a few sessions at least before we can see any results.

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