3% of babies are breech at the end of pregnancy. Doctors and Midwives palpate bellies or use ultrasound during prenatal visits to confirm the position of babies in utero and almost all babies turn into a head down position in the third trimester. Around 32 to 34 weeks of gestation, care givers tend to put a little pressure on to proactively assist growing fetuses to flip in preparation for a vaginal birth. Vaginal breech birth has become a rarity. Many caregivers are inexperienced in breech birth since surgical births have become much more common and a lot safer than they used to be. To give birth to a breech baby involves some increased risk when compared to a vaginal birth of a head down baby. Cesarean birth has increased risk when compared to vaginal birth of a well positioned baby too. Vaginal breech birth is still a healthy option when compared to a surgical birth, but we need more well trained and experienced caregivers to make this option more widely available.
Why do some babies stay breech while most turn into the most common position for birth? Sometimes babies will stay breech because of physiological conditions. A heart shaped uterus or a tangle in the cord can keep a baby buttocks or feet down. Tension in the lower segment of the uterus and misalignment of the pelvis and lower spine can also contribute. A chiropractic technique known as Webster technique is famous for supporting babies to turn. Moxibustion is a technique from Traditional Chinese Medicine where a smokeless herbal stick is heated and then placed close to acupuncture points and also has great stats of success for breech. Homeopathic remedies, inversions, swimming and hypnosis are also popular do it yourself remedies that can help.
Where is Reiki's place in such a situation? All physical conditions have an energetic layer. If some kind of an imbalance is present, why did it manifest in the first place? What emotions are connected with the condition?What role does stress play? What lesson can be learned? How can we find peace with the current situation or possible outcomes that feel out of our control?
When someone comes to me with a breech baby, the Reiki session that I offer is going to be very unique to that particular person and their baby. Often times I will ask about fear. Energetically, kidneys are associated with less common fetal positioning and kidneys can become stagnant when we are holding onto significant fears. Most people have some impending fear of childbirth and motherhood but when a fear is beyond what would be considered common or normal, Reiki can help. I would also explore the person's relationship with her baby and her feelings about bringing her baby outside of her body to share with the world. Many breech moms I've talked with describe holding their babies close to their heart, not wanting to share, not ready for pregnancy to end, wanting to keep baby all to themselves still. Before a breech client lies down on the Reiki table, I'll have a short dialogue to gauge our area of focus for the session, help bring anything up to the surface that is ready to shift or release, and open the client up to new levels of awareness.
Reiki helps clients reach such deep levels of relaxation that any stress, fear, tension, dissolves right there on the table. Customizing the session for each clients particular needs can help give clients exactly what they need. Some clients benefit from more grounding, some need Reiki focused more on emotional and mental healing. Almost always in this situation I would focus a lot of Reiki on the kidneys and kidney meridian, the root and sacral chakra. I love checking in with babies during prenatal Reiki sessions. What is the baby bringing to the table? The baby has a soul and complete consciousness as well, what can Reiki offer them? Reiki benefits babies in the womb just as much as their mothers.
When someone leaves after a prenatal Reiki session, not unlike other Reiki sessions, she should feel loads lighter, more connected and trusting of the journey, more connected to her baby, more confident and relaxed. Tension dissolves and she has a deep sense of peace.
I have seen Reiki help people let go and trust a little more, which gets us out of our own way. I've seen Reiki help people gain a broader awareness of how they're actually feeling, looking at feelings that may have been pushed down or denied. Moms and babies relax, which promotes healing for both. Reiki helps all people prepare for birth, vaginal or cesarean. Reiki most certainly does help breech babies flip into a head down position by supporting healing of the underlying cause. Reiki can cause no harm to mother or fetus.