When someone turns his or her neck from side to side a group of muscles act to conduct this motion; most importantly a muscle called the sternocleidomastoid (SCM). This muscle is very important in regard to proper neck function and head positioning, especially in infants. When infants have torticollis, sometimes referred to as “wry neck” this SCM muscle is in spasm or contracture. Simply put, the muscle is locked up and is too tight.
There are a wide variety of issues that cause in infant to have torticollis. It can start as early as inside the womb and depend on how he or she is positioned during the last weeks before birth. It can happen during the birthing process, as modern birthing techniques place a tremendous amount of force on the infant’s neck when extracting them from the birth canal (Which needs to be done in some circumstances). This process tends to “throw off” the infant’s neck structure, leading to a structural shift of their neck bones.
When the bones in the back of the neck are out of correct placement, the muscles tend to follow. Leading to, you guessed it, torticollis. It is very important that if you suspect your little one to have torticollis to get them examined immediately by a corrective chiropractor. This is because the sooner treatment starts, the better the outcome in most cases.
Dr. Rodewald at Align Chiropractic has vast in experience in treating infants who present with a multitude of conditions. He is pediatric certified through the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association and provides gentle and accurate treatments for all pediatric patients. If you suspect torticollis in your little one, call 952-595-6337 or click above to schedule a consultation with Dr. Rodewald and the team at Align Chiropractic.