3 Ways to Stimulate Your Child’s Vagus Nerve to Help Them Relax
Your kiddo has one main component that controls their ability to feel cool, calm, and collected! The super science term is the vagus nerve but at Blossom Family Chiropractic, we call it the “brake pedal”!
When your kiddo gets ramped up, the vagus nerve is what tells the brain, “alright buddy, it’s time to press the brakes”. That communication is what can bring your child from overwhelmed & anxious to calm & collected.
But when the vagus nerve can’t get the message to your brain, your kiddo’s body can’t regulate itself to calm down.
What is the vagus nerve?
It wanders from the base of the skull in two directions. Upward to connect with nerves in the neck, throat, eyes, and ears. and down towards the lungs, heart, diaphragm, and stomach. It picks up signals from your body and brings them back to your brain.
The vagus nerve controls the parasympathetic nervous system which keeps your body running with the things that we don’t think about. Things like sleep, digestion, immune function, growth and development, relaxation, and healing are all controlled by your vagus nerve.
But most importantly, ESPECIALLY in kiddos, the vagus nerve plays a major role in the body’s ability to go from a stressed and overwhelmed state to a calm and collected state. When a child’s vagus nerve is not able to communicate with their brain, their body gets stuck in a place that we call “fight or flight” mode.
They’re like a Ferrari stuck in overdrive and they’ve lost control of their brakes. They can’t hear you because Metallica is blaring in their head and drowning everything else out.
Stimulating the Vagus Nerve Helps You (and your kiddo!) Calm Down
When the human body detects that something dangerous is around, it goes into “fight or flight” mode. When that happens, adrenaline kicks in as you literally prepare to fight or run for your life. You will feel your heart start to the race, you might sweat and your thoughts will race.
Once the danger is gone your body should start to calm back down. Your heartbeat should return to normal and you will have clear thoughts. That transition out of “fight or flight” is led by your vagus nerve! It tells the brain to let the body relax since the danger is gone.
You can signal your body to relax by activating your vagus nerve. This is incredibly helpful when you are feeling overwhelmed!
Here are a few ways that you can “activate” Your Vagus Nerve:
– Deep breathing: Take slow and steady breaths.
– Get outside: When you are in that overwhelmed space, get into nature.
– Chiropractic care: Regular adjustments keep the pathways from the vagus nerve to the brain open so they can communicate when they need to!
Try these with your kiddo next time they’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed. When your body realizes that it can come out of that “fight or flight” mode, the vagus nerve can return to keeping your digestion, breathing, and all of the other always occurring things in your body functioning at their best!
Chiropractic adjustments for vagus nerve
At Blossom Family Chiropractic, we take a neurological approach to chiropractic care. We know how important the vagus nerve is to your entire body and how you feel. When we assess each patient at our St. Petersburg office we use advanced technology to measure HOW their vagus nerve is functioning.
With our very specific adjusting techniques, we are able to help your vagus nerve communicate at its best capacity with your brain. Our in-depth scans show us exactly where the miscommunication is so that we can adjust at the precise place.
If you are in St. Pete, Florida area and have felt like you are stuck in “fight or flight” mode, book an appointment with us so we can help your vagus nerve function at its best!