Head down baby is something that all of us have heard of. Around 32 weeks of pregnancy, the head of the baby is facing towards the root canal. It is quiet easy for the baby to rotate from head up to head down position termed as cephalic presentation as there happens to be lot of space in the uterus. In the case of some babies they position their heads much down later and this could be a few minutes before labour pain begins. The stage of movement from foetus to a cephalic presentation is termed as baby lightning or head engagement.
Now you might wonder why a head down position baby during pregnancy is important? The main reason is that labour will be shorter and if the baby turns their heads down, it is the head that comes out first.
Out of the various types of cephalic presentation, vertex presentation is most common. Here the back of the baby faces your tummy, and the head towards the spine. This works out to be an ideal position for birth as the baby is lined up in a manner to fit in the pelvis as far as possible. In the face presentation, the head is extended and the face is the leading part. It is more common among premature babies and the chances of it occurring are pretty remote.
How to ensure that your baby achieves head down position in the first place?
If the baby has not gone to achieve a cephalic position around 36 weeks, there are a few steps that could be taken at your end in altering their position. Please ensure that you share your detailed plan with your health care professional before you start
- Change your position to a sitting one- Move your pelvis forward and make it a point that your knees are never above the hips. This works out to be an optimal fetal position and helps your baby to get down in head down position with considerable ease.
- Try to get in a comfortable position and scrub the floor- when you are on all fours, it becomes quiet easy for the baby to change their position and come right in front of your belly.
- Always try to be active and do not sit extended hours at a place. Walking is the best remedy to help the baby turn and stay vertex. With the help of walking movement in vertex is created which helps the baby turn coupled with the upright stance of the mother
- Rely on the use of cushion when you are in a car so that your knees come under your hips
- Try to lean over a birthing ball. It is one of those inflatable balls which otherwise is referred to as an exercise ball. Try to lean when you are watching TV or using your computer
- Do not worry about getting your baby into an appropriate position, when you are sleeping. Always try to sleep on your left side.