Category Archives: Baby positions & presentations

What if…

You MUST read this!  If there is nothing else you read during your whole pregnancy, read this one.  And give it out to all your pregnant friends too. Not only does it help prepare you just in case you have an a ’emergency’ childbirth situation, but it helps you to understand that birth is not scary, but pretty straightforward.

This is a booklet called Emergency Childbirth by Dr Gregory White.  It is written for emergency services workers, who may come across a woman about to give birth as they go about their duties.  It covers quite a few different birthing ’emergencies’ and what to do about them.

Here it is:
Emergency Childbirth

I just love this quote “In over 95% of cases of emergency childbirth though the emergency attendant will be overwhelmed with gratitude, and widely praised as a hero or heroine, he or she can smile within themselves at the knowledge that their simple tasks could have been performed by any bright eight-year-old.”  I know my hubby felt that way after my accidental unassisted homebirth!  Everyone congratulated him, and he said ‘but all I did was catch!’  He said, he had so much adrenaline pumping through his system, and all he had to do was stand by and watch and wait (and run to the bedroom to get my printed out copy of this booklet!)



Birth Story: Cord Prolapse Survival

This is an amazing birth story.  Please don’t think I’m putting it here to scare you, but instead, to educate you, if you have the rare birth complication of a cord prolapse.  This baby was born completely healthy, due to the mother’s quick thinking.  I’ve included down the bottom a ‘How to Handle a Cord Prolapse’ guide from another site.
The lady who originally posted this story on her blog is great.  Go check it out her site.

Birth story: cord prolapse at home

A reader recently sent me an incredible birth story, and I wanted to share it with you. After a few irregular contractons, she had a cord prolapse at home. She wrote to me:

“This was a planned homebirth…we had called the midwife as soon as my water broke to have her come out (my water had never broke previous to the pushing stage before). Then when I stood to get up, I saw the cord. Feel free to post and link back to me, I thought it was a story you might be interested in hearing. Amazingly, when I went in for my postpartum visit with the OB who did the c-section, the first thing he said to me was, ‘You know, nothing would have been any different if you had planned a hospital birth. You still would have been at home when your water broke and the cord would still have prolapsed.’ I was amazed at how positive he was and how willing he was to admit this was not a ‘home birth’ issue. I think Apollo’s story is important for people to hear…being knowledgeable about that one issue (what to do in case of a cord prolapse) is what saved his life.” Read the rest of this entry »


Official recommendations

Here’s a bit of research I have undertaken to find out what the official guidelines are on these potentially contentious issues. Long Pregnancies, PROM, Electronic Fetal Monitoring, Breech Birth and VBAC.  I wanted to find more official guidelines on different topics, but I couldn’t think of more topics to look up!  It’s always good to know what the professional organisations recommend, compared to what your doctor is recommending.

ACOG (American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists) on
Long pregnancies

Most women give birth between 38 and 42 weeks of pregnancy. But very few babies are born on their due dates. It is normal to give birth as much as 3 weeks before or 2 weeks after your due date.

A postterm pregnancy is one that lasts 42 weeks or longer.

Problems occur in only a small portion of postterm pregnancies. Most women who give birth after the due date have healthy newborns. Read the rest of this entry »


The lie of the ‘too small’ pelvis

Small Pelvis? Here’s The Truth About Cephalopelvic Disproportion (CPD)

A diagnosis of CPD (cephalopelvic disproportion) is where the baby’s head is thought to be too large to pass through the woman’s pelvis.

In the 18th and 19th centuries, poor nutrition, rickets and illnesses such as polio caused pelvic anomalies, which resulted in loss of life during childbirth. Indeed initially CPD was the most common reason for carrying out a caesarean. In modern times, however, CPD is rare, since our general standard of living is so much higher and true CPD is more likely to be caused by pelvic fracture due to road traffic accidents or congenital abnormalities.

Often CPD is implied rather than diagnosed. In cases where labour has failed to progress or the baby has become distressed, medical staff commonly assume that this is due to physical inadequacies in the mother rather than look towards circumstances of the mother’s care. Read the rest of this entry »


Good reason for an Epidural – Surviving a long labour

Another article I wish I had read when I was pregnant with Gabe!  Prodromal Labour is horrible! I remember after being in labour for 60 hours (and having no sleep in that whole time), I told the midwife ‘I am just so tired; I don’t know how much longer I can do this for’.  Her answer: ‘Well you’ve got another cervical check in 2 hours, so we’ll see how you are going then, and then we can talk about an epidural or some pethedine’.  To be completely honest, my thoughts consisted of ‘an epidural? Really? Is that all?  I just want this to be over. A c/section would be fine. I don’t care’.  Luckily, he was born exactly 2 hours later, so the epidural and the c/s were out of the question. 

This article is great at describing how normal this type of labour is.  That there is nothing to fear, and that unfortunately, it is something that many women just have to put up with.  I found that incredibly comforting, when looking towards #2’s birth.

Written on May 16, 2010 at 8:12 pm by Birth Sense


On rare occasions, an epidural–usually something I like to avoid–can be a blessing, allowing mother complete pain relief and the opportunity to rest.

Sharla’s birth story:

I was pregnant with my first baby in 2005, and looking forward to having a completely natural, non-interventive labor and birth.  I wanted to bring my baby into this world without drugs in her system, and I wanted to experience all of my labor.  I prepared myself for all the aspects of labor I could read about, but I was not prepared to have to make a change in plans. Read the rest of this entry »


Baby positioning

This is from a larger article from The rest of the article is really quite interesting regarding obstetrics and how hospital professionals are being lied to when it comes to VBACs, thereby perpetuating the overuse of c/s & high failure rate of VBACs.

Heading In The Right Direction!


A Butcher’s Dozen by Nancy Wainer
© 2001 Midwifery Today, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
[Editor’s note: This article first appeared in Midwifery Today Issue 57, Spring 2001.]

One of the reasons that so many of the women with whom I work have successful VBACs, even with very large babies, is that we pay strict attention to the position of their babies. Information about tuning in to the baby’s position during pregnancy, in early labor, and then paying careful attention to it throughout the labor, makes a tremendous difference in birth and in VBAC outcomes. I suggest that you pay very close attention to Valerie El Halta’s article “Posterior Labor: A Pain in the Back” [Midwifery Today Issue 36 and Wisdom of the Midwives] and the booklet Understanding and Teaching Optimal Foetal Positioning by Jean Sutton and Pauline Scott [available through Midwifery Today].

OK, so we know the baby’ s head is down. But that information alone is not enough. Read the rest of this entry »


Baby Malpositions – Implications for birth

They reckon that a wierd position is why my labour was over 60 hours with Gabe!  Sorry this is a long article, she has lots of interesting and useful stuff to say!

Baby Malpositions: Implications for Birth

by KMom
Copyright © 2000-2001 KMom@Vireday.Com. All rights reserved.

DISCLAIMER: The information on this website is not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. Consult your health provider.

There are two terms that are used to refer to how the baby is located in the mother’s body, presentation and position. Although some resources use these terms inconsistently, presentation properly refers to which part of the baby ‘presents’ first at the vagina; in other words, whether the baby is head-up (breech), head-down (vertex), or shoulder-first/sideways (transverse). Position usually refers to how the back of the baby’s head is lying in reference to the mother’s spine (towards her spine or away from it, etc.).

Traditionally, the obstetric community has placed great importance on a baby’s presentation (breech, transverse, or vertex). Subtle problems in baby position and how they impact labor have been largely ignored, however.  In other words, if the baby is head-down it is assumed to be ready for vaginal delivery and any deviation from a ‘normal’ labor curve viewed as a failure of the mother’s ability to labor and birth, therefore ‘needing’ drugs and/or surgical intervention. Read the rest of this entry »

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