Saturday, August 23, 2014

What To Do When Baby is Breech

So you're nearing the end of your pregnancy and you find out your baby is breech...what do you do?! With our third child, we experienced this and it was terrifying. We declined a c-section and chose to have a vaginal breech delivery. When I was attempting to get him to turn, I tried all sorts of ways to get Avery to turn head down. He went head down...and then he turned breech again! So yes, I really did give birth to a 9lb breech baby.

However, for many pregnant women, this equals an automatic c-section. The truth of the matter is that most care providers won't deliver a breech baby any way other than a c-section. But that doesn't always have to be the case. Even if you and/or your provider isn't comfortable with a vaginal breech delivery, there are some things you can try to do to get that baby to get in a vertex (head down) position.

Also, know that before 30 weeks or so, a breech baby is still really common!


Webster Technique. Finding a chiropractor certified in the Webster Technique is really helpful. In fact, a chiropractor near where we live has a high success rate at turning breech babies.You can find a chiropractor certified in this at the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association website. Read more about the Webster Technique here.

External Cephalic Version. This is a procedure in which your OBGYN or other care provider would attempt to turn your baby. Sometimes the doctor will give a medication to relax the uterus and prevent contractions. Then the doctor uses his/her hands to flip and turn the baby into a vertex (head down) position. It can be a painful procedure. However, 73% of women who had successful versions went onto having vaginal births. Evidence Based Birth has more information published by the CDC that you can read here.

Forward Leaning Inversion. Spinning Babies is a really popular website about fetal positioning. The inversion is meant to give stretch the ligaments, giving baby plenty of room to remain head down. You can learn how to do an inversion here.

MyBreechBaby.org has many more breech resources and information!

There are many, many tips out there for flipping a breech babe. I've heard of playing music near the bottom of mom's belly, having mom go swimming, acupuncture, and more. Above all, educate yourself and discuss options with your care provider. 


Have you had a breech birth? Do you have any tips on helping a breech baby turn?

2 comments:

  1. Great information. I'm lucky my kids weren't breech. I was, butt first and Mom said, "No c-section!" Pretty gutsy for a 41 year old in the mid-60s. :)

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  2. I got my first child to turn head down with very little space left before going into labor. It was very intense, though not painful (but I was watching at the time so maybe that's why).

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