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Saturday, 31 March 2012

Head Down - Bottoms Up!

Moxabustion to turn Breech Baby

So it turns out having managed to avoid gestational diabetes and pre-eclampsia this time around, this baby has come up with a new challenge for me - its' breech. Which means that whilst my baby has its heart in the right place, its derriere is firmly wedged in my pelvis where its head should be. Sigh. As I'm 33 weeks its not a disaster, as there is apparently room in there for the baby to still turn round. It certainly doesn't feel like there is any room as my tummy resembles a water balloon fit to burst.

Being a bit of a hippy I would like as natural a birth as possible (when my baby is ready i.e. overdue or not). So, I'd like to help my baby to turn into the right position with alternative (non-invasive) treatments. If the baby remains breech usual practise is for the hospital to try and manually turn the baby (at 36 weeks), and if it still hasn't turned they recommend a planned Cesarean (at 38 weeks). And yes, manually turning the baby can be stressful and/or uncomfortable for both mum and baby, and having a Cesarean is a major operation, for which the recovery period is much greater than getting over a bruised and battered vagina. And besides that the birth of my little girl was a pretty amazing experience that I'd like to do again. I cannot recommend pelvic floor exercises and perennial massage enough ladies!

So off I trundled to an acupuncturist that came highly recommended by my pregnancy yoga teacher (who, incidentally knows anyone worth their salt related to pregnancy or babies in Surrey). Contact me if you'd like her details...

The treatment I had was Moxabustion combined with some acupuncture needling. I had heard about Moxabustion before and thought it involved a candle or some such stick being placed between my toes and burnt. Weird and wonderful yes, but I had also heard it worked for most mums who had tried it.

Well it wasn't a candle, it was a moxabustion stick made from a Chinese herb called Mugwort (isn't that the school in Harry Potter?). It looks like a cigar and when it is burning (glows red-hot) it is held close to acupuncture point called Bladder 67 on your little toe. And yes, it is hot! Most scary is the fact that I need my husband to repeat the treatment on me for 5 or so days. Yikes. I have to say having such a reassuring acupuncturist made the whole experience very relaxed - you wouldn't want someone you didn't trust waving that red hot coal by your feet. Tension is not conducive to babies moving where they should.

Rather than describing the whole thing, I've cheated and included a You Tube video below where you can see it being done. Wish me, my husband and the bump luck.... I think I have the burns hot line for the hospital to hand somewhere... :)


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1 comment:

  1. It seems moxabustion has worked. Pretty sure I'm being booted in the ribs this morning. Hat's off to my accupuncturist Susan (@Woking Holistic Health Centre) and thank you to my lovely husband who patiently heated my toes with minimal eye rolling!

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