Even the best laid plans for a natural childbirth can be shaken when you find out your little one wants to come into the world feet or bottom first! Unfortunately the art of supporting a woman to birth a breech baby is dying out in favour of the surgical option and increasingly if a woman has a breech baby she is not given any other option but caesarean.
Moxibustion* has long been used as a technique to encourage baby into correct positioning. The treatment creates optimal conditions and space for baby to turn. Moxibustion is applied to an acupoint near your little toe that is theorised to stimulate hormones that encourage uterine contraction and in turn stimulates the baby to move. You’ll probably notice increased baby movements during the moxibustion.
Breech Baby treatment is best performed at around 34 weeks.
The session involves a full consultation to ensure there are no energetic or structural problems preventing baby from turning and may include Massage and Moxibustion to help open the pelvis and diaphragm to create space. According to diagnosis, 3 or 4 Acupuncture points may be chosen. During treatment you will be guided into a deep relaxation using Birth Hypnosis helping you establish communication with your baby and ‘talk’ your baby into the correct position.
You’ll be given Moxibustion sticks with instructions to take home to continue the treatment as well as information on Optimal Foetal Positioning.
In most cases the outcome is successful and a follow-up appointment is not needed.
*Moxibustion is a technique that uses the herb Mugwort to apply warmth to the body.
How to Birth a Breech…’Your vagina is going to get huge!’
I love the scene in Ina May Gaskin’s Birth Story documentary where Ina May describes exactly what a woman needs to do to birth a breech and followed by amazing footage of a breech birth. The bub is unexpectedly breech and the midwives just roll with it. Watch it!
“Judy, a first time mother, came to our birth centre because her baby was in breech position. Several people tried to scare her into having a caesarean by warning her that her baby’s head could be caught inside at birth. I told her that in my experience , her baby’s large bottom was actually going to prepare the way for his head. Holding my hands in a circle to indicate the size to which her vagina would open gradually (about the size of a large grapefruit), I told her, “You’re going to get huge.”
One week later, her son’s bottom was just coming into view after seventeen hours of labor. Before his butt pushed directly against her perineum, her vagina enlarged and opened to an extent that astounded me…
Some days later when Judy and I were talking about her birth, I told her how surprised I had been to see how open her vagina became… Judy said, “I used that mantra you gave me.”
“Mantra?” I repeated, unsure what she meant.
“I kept thinking while I was pushing, I’m going to get huge. I’m going to get huge!” she said.”
– Ina May Gaskin, Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth