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Hello. I am ~17 weeks pregnant. My last pregnancy the baby was posterior, asynclitic, tried coming out ear first = c-section. The whole pregnancy he was very low, pounding on my cervix. I had sciatica, BH daily, etc. Naturally, he was also late.

Now that I'm pregnant again I'm doing everything I can to make sure this babe knows how to get in the proper position for birth. I already discovered that the knees-to-chest for 20-30 minutes will alleviate sciatica. Yea!

It is recommended for pregnant women to sleep on their left side. Babies go with gravity. When mom is on her left side the baby is on it's back, facing her right hip, no? Isn't ROP the worst position for getting stuck? Why sleep on the left side if it makes the baby get used to ROP? I know fetal blood flow is slightly better when mom is on her left side, but it still doesn't make sense to me.

Lately I've been sleeping with a Boppy under my belly so the babe is in the middle.
 

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If you haven't already, go to www.spinningbabies.com

The occiput is near the back of the baby's head. Sleeping on your left side should encourage an LOA position because the baby's back should lay a little left of the midline. You want the baby's back to fall toward the front of your tummy and him to be looking at your back (but they usually choose to the right or the left, though some are straight OA). Like () not like this (( if that makes any sense


I probably didn't answer your question, so i'll let someone else take a stab
 

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Anecdotally, I followed the left side sleeping thing religiously (ow, my hip!) and my daughter was consistently LOA all the way through, so at least some of the time it can work out like that!
 

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If baby's back is to your left hip (and a tiny bit forward) and they are looking to your right hip (and a tiny bit back) then that is LOA... not ROP. It's confusing though (the terms) but basically you WANT baby's back to be at the left-front edge of your tummy and baby looking toward your right bum cheek.


Baby's do get used to position, but from what I have read and heard, the last few weeks (35 and on I believe) is what it is specifically more important for baby to be in a good position (for the sake that their space gets cramped and it's prep for birth). I am feeling quite anal about it this time so I've been on my left side to sleep about 90% of the time from 20+ weeks on... but I have also had an acynclitic, partly posterior baby (that resulted in a homebirth transfer to the hospital after an ungodly amount of transition ctx. and forever-lasting labor). I have also had an LOA baby come out with a super "easy" labor in less than 9 hours... and I want a repeat at least!


If you find that baby is picking a not-so-great position or you have pain (b/c of baby position or what not), try going to a chiropractor (esp. someone trained in maternal, pg adjustments). It can loosen tight muscles or areas that is causing baby to choose a less-favorable (but to them, more comfortable) position. For example... if it was annoying to walk around with your pants zipped b/c they were too tight, eventually you'd unzip them, or take them off... but for baby they can't undo where they are, but they CAN alter where they lay in there. It's the same idea.

Babies can turn even in labor, and now that you are not having a first, it's even more likely that you could turn baby in labor, should you need to, but it's better (of course) to start off with them in a good position. I've seen probably about 80% of the previous-cesarean Mommas I work with having had a malpositioned baby. It's too bad there is not more emphasis put on baby positioning earlier on.
~Julie
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by BirthFree
I've seen probably about 80% of the previous-cesarean Mommas I work with having had a malpositioned baby. It's too bad there is not more emphasis put on baby positioning earlier on.
~Julie
Thanks for the explanation.

I'm not quite sure I understand what you are saying. 80% had 1st poorly positioned babies but had 2nd babies with better positioning? Or the second babies are also 80% malpositioned? So confused.
 

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Oh, sorry. 80% of the Mommas I see at ICAN (International Cesarean Awareness Network) that are trying for a VBAC (or some that aren't) have had their previous baby (whatever baby was cesarean) be malpositioned.

It's interesting to talk to them... you can fit the pieces together of labor progression, labor feel, contractions, interventions and such (even labor records) that show baby was not in a good bith position. It's an interesting fact that many of these Moms were overdue (a malpositioned baby is more likely to be overdue as well).

Because of the information on positioning that they learn lots of these Mommas that are trying for VBACs (all of them so far) take great lengths to ensure a better positioned baby. So far it seems to really help with labor length and pushing (as a posterior baby will come out, but it generally takes longer to push them out esp. for a first time through the pelvis Momma).

I have noticed that the Moms with malpositioned babies have a tendency to have a malpositioned baby again - but that may just be the few Mommas I've seen with this situation recently or that maybe something in their bodies or pelvis' kind of lean their babies this way...

Just speculating and sharing my observations.

~Julie
 

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My dd (3rd child) was malpositioned and I have been seeing an osteopath during this pregnancy who has straightened out my pelvis and eased my back. This babe is so far - 35 weeks - perfectly positioned in LOA and 2/5 engaged.

Maybe you should see a chiropractor or osteopath to see if there is anything 'structural' that you could do as well as OFP?
 

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I've been struggling with this issue my entire pregnancy. Lying on my left side has been, for chiropractic reasons, mostly excruciating, and messes up my alignment to a point that I think sends the baby to the right. So I was lying on my right side and on my back (propped in such a way that I didn't cut off circulation). Then, I finally got my back to a point where I could lie on the left without too much trouble and started doing it. Baby was on the left for a week or two, and is now (at almost 37 weeks) favoring the right. While I'm on my left. He puts his feet down to the left as though to hold himself up on the right! I'm starting to think he's just messing with me. But, I must say, since I've stopped reclining and am sitting mostly on a birth ball and a kneeling chair, he tends to go straight OA when I'm upright. So I totally believe there's something to the spinningbabies wisdom.
 

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I know from persoanl experiencethat a woman with history of breech should definitely not to any laying on her back.it is optimal to request also that any ultrasound that mom may have be done propped up with pillows , slightly turned to one side.
 

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I'm having pain in my left hip when laying on my left side. I use a pregnancy pillow but what else can I do to help with the pain? It's right where the pelvis bone hits the mattress (it's a soft pillowtop). My right side feels so much better, but I'd like to get over to my left side soon (I'm at the end of my first trimester so I know it's not that important but I have always made it a rule to side lay once I was showing - is that correct??)
 

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Becky, maybe go to your left side like normal but crook your right knee and leg up so that you can roll into the bed just a bit... this should take a lot of the pressure off of your hip and is ideal for baby positioning (and you can do this until you have your baby even with a big tummy
). Otherwise, if your hip continues to bother you - perhaps a massage or stretching to loosen it up a bit more?

As for the "rule" basically you want to switch to side laying once it's uncomfy to be on your back. I slept on my back for 16w at least... but then it became uncomfortable so I altered it... and at that point the uterus isn't heavy enough to be a problem with circulation, etc. Generally the idea is that it will wake you up and you will be uncomfortable before it hurts baby... or so I have had it told to me.

~Julie
 

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My first baby tried to come out ear first, too, so I definitely have positioning baggage!
She was breech/transverse until 36 weeks, then ended up head down but posterior/asynclitic.

I am just about 37 weeks with my second and this one has been vertex and LOA throughout this entire pregnancy! (Frantic wood knocking!!
) I do try to do hands and knees, knee chest, etc., but they usually end up as horsey rides after my toddler climbs on my back. What I think has helped has been sleeping nearly on my stomach (bottom leg straight down, top one bent up with a pillow underneath it, bottom arm behind my back and the other one in front so my chest is pretty flat on the bed... I hope that makes some sense).

Congratulations and good luck!
 

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The best book I've read about this is "Sit Up and Take Notice" which is now out of print but we talk about optimal fetal positioning in the Hypnobabies class that I teach.

One factor for malpositioning is slouching during the day or sitting in a chair or lounger at night, etc. Always having a wedge behind your back if you work in an office job for instance is recommended b/c the weight of the baby's back will shift to where the greatest curve is...make sure that it is your belly and not your back.

So then obvious things like swimming face down for as long as you can is great, getting on all fours while watching your fav. t.v. show so that you're not just doing a token amount of time 5-10 min.s say will help and baby spinning has some great ideas.

As far as asynclitic presentation doing your kegels will help to strengthen the muscles to help the baby's chin be tucked in.

I hope some of this has helped.
 

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Okay, I'm really starting to wonder here. My baby was cool with me left side lying for several weeks, and went to the left with me. Now, for the past week or so, he's been consistently going right when I go left, like I said in an earlier post putting his feet down to the left as though to hold himself up on the right. So I tried lying on the right for a little bit, and it sent him left. Should I lie right side now, then? That's what my gut's telling me, but I don't want to do something stupid.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by phoebemommy
That's what my gut's telling me.
Personally, I'd say listen to your body. You and your baby are the ones sharing the space, how could anybody on the outside know better than you do?
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by pease
Personally, I'd say listen to your body. You and your baby are the ones sharing the space, how could anybody on the outside know better than you do?
ITA. Also, this is anecdotal, but the midwife I had for my last birth recommended a weekly prenatal massage the last month of pregnancy to help get me in a good place for the birth. She also thinks it helps with avoiding back labor. 4 prenatal massages is expensive, but she encouraged us to think of it as an investment. In my case I think it was well worth it.
 

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First, I am not a midwife or doula, but wanted to comment. There is good, practical advice here. However, occassionally, no matter what you do, baby ends up occiput posterior. Last pregnancy I had no car, biked 20km+ per day, did artwork the last 5 weeks leaning forward, did yoga every other day... blah blah.... Still ended up with horrible position.

I think it is important to do your best (use sports ball instead of leaning back on the couch...), but in the end, cut yourself some slack if the position isn't "perfect." Also consider what you can do during active labor - polar bear position, rebozo... to get baby to reposition. Try to get your mw to reposition babe.... heck, make sure she even understands babes position and the extra pain and time involved in back labor, sees the warning signs, like very painful contractions that aren't opening any or getting stuck at 8cm.... Why are so many midwives missing the signs, and instead just assuming mom isn't in labor?
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Drewsmom
The best book I've read about this is "Sit Up and Take Notice" which is now out of print but we talk about optimal fetal positioning in the Hypnobabies class that I teach.

One factor for malpositioning is slouching during the day or sitting in a chair or lounger at night, etc. Always having a wedge behind your back if you work in an office job for instance is recommended b/c the weight of the baby's back will shift to where the greatest curve is...make sure that it is your belly and not your back...
Yes! I completely agree with this one- picture your body like a giant hammock when you are slouching- your baby snuggles right into this position, and your body sort of relaxes around it in a slouch. There are probably some great posture books in general out there, but remember to play connect the dots with your earlobes, shoulders, and hips while sitting: if you can draw a straight line between those three spots, you're doing great!

Clara
 
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