Child development is something every parent is concerned about – we all want our children to be the best! As with many health-related issues, we often wait until something is wrong before seeking help. When we wait until school age tests to be certain how our child is developing, it’s often past the critical period to be able to see the biggest change to their brain function.

In this episode, I talk to Dr Marty Rosen who teaches internationally on the topic of how skull movement affects brain development in babies and children.

Often babies have small but noticeable asymmetries in their skulls, which can alter the way the child’s brain develops. This is sometimes due to a traumatic delivery, like forceps pressure, sometimes due to sleeping positions, but often the baby’s positioning inside Mum’s tummy has a big effect too.

As a baby’s brain begins to develop before he/she is born, by the time of birth, the foundations are in place for this growth and development to continue through infancy. A whopping 80-90% of brain growth occurs within those first two years, so this is a really important episode for all parents to listen to.

One of the biggest things I hope to do with this podcast is to encourage change before things “go wrong”, and Marty is absolutely on the ball with that message too. But be warned, Marty is an absolute wealth of knowledge, and he talks fast…. really fast! So you may have to rewind back a few times, but I promise you, it’s worth it. What this man doesn’t know, is not worth knowing.

About Marty Rosen

Martin G. Rosen, DC, is a 1981 graduate of Life Chiropractic College.  He lives and practices with his wife Nancy Watson, D.C and his daughter Erin Rosen, D.C. in Wellesley, Massachusetts.  Dr. Rosen taught his first chiropractic seminar in 1979 and has traveled the world teaching SOT®, pediatrics, cranial adjusting, practice management and chiropractic philosophy and neurology ever since.  For over 33 years, he has been at the forefront of chiropractic pediatric and specifically pediatric craniopathy.  He has written multiple books and research studies as well as run a successful family chiropractic practice.   Dr. Rosen has dedicated his life and inspired thousands of others in the pursuit of excellence in the application in the art and science of chiropractic.  His “Pediatric Chiropractic Care” book is a “must have” book for those chiropractors looking to become experts in the care of children.

He is widely active on social media, and you can find him on Facebook in many forms: his personal page, his officehis paediatric page and he’s also on twitter.

In this episode, we discuss:

  • How a baby’s brain begins to develop before he/she has even been born
  • The formation of synapses (connections) between different parts of the brain begins in utero!
  • Foundations are needed to build the basis for the baby to grow on, and reach developmental milestones
  • At birth we have almost all the raw materials to develop upon
  • 80-90% of brain growth occurs in the first 2 years
  • The survival part of the brain (cerebellum) grows 240% in the first year of life
  • Social developmental milestones are reached as a result of the nervous system growth
  • Psychologists describe the first 2 years as the period for most dynamic growth
  • Why it’s so important to identify children at risk of neuro-developmental delay within the first year
  • A lot of the issues we are seeing in children at school age actually occurred within the first year of life
  • The health of our future generations is declining due to the onslaught of environmental insults
  • Children need a nervous system that is able to deal with the insults in order to develop appropriately, which is the aim of the chiropractic paradigm
  • Environmental insults can be physical (falls, bumps to the head, junior sports), chemical (air & water pollution, electromagnetic fields from mobile phones and iPads, food), emotional (lack of bonding) & sometimes spiritual
  • The nervous system usually adapts, but sometimes compensates
  • The three parts of the nervous system and what they control within the body: central, peripheral and autonomic
  • How a stretched spinal cord (from forward postures such as children playing on iPads, or even from a straightforward birth) affects the developing brain and body, as a result of changing the tone of the nervous system
  • Compensatory patterns – what they are and how we get them – if we have too many things to compensate for, then we can’t develop as well or as quickly as intended
  • How nerves from the upper neck feed directly into the brain, and while glitches may not show up immediately, as different areas of the brain begin to develop, differences are noticed
  • How an overloaded nervous system can begin to balance once subluxations are corrected
  • Different children with different personalities will show their inability to adapt in different ways, but it all comes down to the same thing – an overwhelmed nervous system
  • How the skull is designed to allow the brain to grow, but with altered movement in the skull bones, the whole system down to the coccyx is affected – this changes the speed of nerve reaction times
  • Slower nerve reaction times may result in slower learning
  • The younger you are, the better the ability to adapt
  • Symptoms aren’t a good indicator of whether a child needs to be checked
  • How birth affects the infant’s nervous system
  • Marty’s preference is to check all babies within 7-10 days
  • Final thought: “It is imperative to have your child’s spine and nervous system checked by a competent chiropractor as soon as possible to make sure that you give them the greatest opportunity to develop their optimum potential: neurologically, immune system, socially, emotionally & physically”

Further research:

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