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Optimum Foetal Positioning and how/when to do it

(69 Posts)
MoosMa Fri 17-Nov-06 20:52:09

DD1 was OP and DD2 seems to be following suit - I woke up lying on my back this morning with a tangle of limbs poking out through my tummy button! I mentioned it to a consultant I saw today, who said that nothing I do will make a difference, the shape of my pelvis will determine the baby's position and that if DD1 was OP then that was obviously the best way for her to be. I really can't believe this to be true so I'm going to give OFP a try - I figure it may work and if it doesn't I haven't lost anything.

Sooooo, what have you found worked for turning your baby the right way, and when did you start doing it?

lulumama Fri 17-Nov-06 20:56:33

ooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhh! excititng!

would love to know how you get on!! only found out about OFP after i had my posterior baby , but have recommended it a lot!!!!

the shape of your pelvis sort of makes a difference..but you can shift the baby around...!!

someone i know had a baby who was breech and had been for weeks...i gave her a load of literature re OFP & turning a breech and the baby turned and stayed turned!!!

my OP turned in labour.....spent virtually all the first stage on my feet, up and moving

15 hours later......<<sigh>> she turned! and was born 3 1/4 hours later!!!

OP babies just tend to make for a longer more back achey don;t stress too much if doesn't turn...xx

give it a have nothing to lose!!

lulumama Fri 17-Nov-06 20:57:04

start now!

MoosMa Fri 17-Nov-06 21:10:25

I ought to have said, I'm 27 weeks tomorrow and am still lying on my back when I'm asleep although I tell myself not to .

DD1 took 26 hours to get out and was quite a scary experience which very nearly ended in a cs (which I reeeeeeally want to avoid).

I never got backache with her though

lulumama Fri 17-Nov-06 21:13:13

tell me more about your first labour...sure she was OP??? epidural? assistance?

are you worried about another long labour?


don;t sleep on your back if you can help it, will tend to gravitate towards your back and all the pressure on your arteries from the weight of the baby can make you feel a bit breathless ...

JoshandJamie Fri 17-Nov-06 21:26:16

Get a birthing ball - one of those big pilates ball things. Sit on it everday instead of on the sofa to ensure your knees are higher than your hips. Also spend some time each day leaning over it on all fours. Gravity should help the baby swing around.

Olihan Fri 17-Nov-06 21:41:19

I asked this on my antenatal thread as my dc3 is currently OP. Ds and dd were OA so it sounds as though your consultant was talking cobblers. I was recommended this site and there's loads of info on there. You have to scroll down the main page and go via Antenatal Preparation for Labour and Birth, then scroll to Get your baby in the best position for birth, then scroll again to optimum foetal positioning because it doesn't change the URL for each page. It seems to have everything you need to know though.

lulumama Fri 17-Nov-06 21:43:32

great link olihan..and fab advice from joshandjamie too.....

also have a look at

and LISTEN to your body in labour as you often instinctively move in such a way that you can manouvre the baby into a good certainkly happened for me..!

MoosMa Sat 18-Nov-06 09:21:16

lulumama, all through my notes it said ROP and the midwife called a student in to look at me once as I was a "textbook case" with the hollow around my tummy button. Also all I could feel was limbs poking forwards all the time!

I did have an epidural as I spent a lot of my time reclined in the pool ( at me as I knew better and midwife as she shouldn't have let me) which meant I stuck at 5cm for 5 hours over night and got too exhausted to cope any longer. Ended with ventouse which went wrong - DD has a scar on her forehead where it popped off and took the skin with it.

There was a lot of muttering in corners in the last couple of hours about low heart rates, oxygen levels and "you're not out the woods yet". Afterwards they said I had been 10 minutes away from needing an em/cs.

So yes, I am nervous about another long unpleasant one and nearly cried when the consultant shot me down yesterday. I think I'd rather have false hope than none at all.

Thanks for the link Olihan, I'll have a good read through that later on...

2Happy Sat 18-Nov-06 09:28:14

MoosMa, ds was OP (and coming superman as well ) and I had a long and traumatic time ending in rotational forceps (and ds has a scar too!). I'm worried about this one being OP too, but mw said a) I had been stretched to hell and back so there was less chance of this one being OP and b) even if it is OP I had been stretched to hell and back (did she have to point that out again?!) and the chances were that this baby would rotate easily during labour. She said needing forceps/ventouses for rotation were unusual in second labours. She may have been just trying to placate me, but I did feel better (though will be following the links on this thread for OFP!!).

2Happy Sat 18-Nov-06 09:33:02

Ooooooh noooooo! Just read the link and it says an inny belly button's a sign of OP - I had an inny with ds, and guess what? It's an inny now too! Turn, baby, turn!!!!

lulumama Sat 18-Nov-06 09:43:04

sorry it was so awful first time moosma...

but i think 2Happy;smidwife is talking sense!!! there is less chance of forceps or ventouse this time as you are aware of how to position yourself and therefore they baby...and can try and maximise your chances of baby being ROA or LOA....

FWIW> told me i had an OP baby....i only put two and two together afterwards! notes just said - head down, that was it...

and water is a great place to birth...esp if you had perineal trauma last time...esp. with a compound presentation!

a water birth this time would probably be a much more postitive experience and you KNOW what you need to do!

the knowledge you have this time, maes for a better labour

will post some links later!

puppydavies Sat 18-Nov-06 10:29:52

hips higher than knees, at all times. sit on the floor not on the sofa. drape yourself forward over a birth ball/beanbag. swim breaststroke (not backstroke!). got any floors need scrubbing? during labour walking up stairs is supposed to help them turn too.

hate to say it but i did all the ofp first time and it didn't work (although i was doing it on the offchance, didn't know i had op, had i known it for sure - and knowing what i do now about op labour - i might have been rather more consistent )

good luck. i've a feeling i'm likely to be in exactly the same place in a couple of moths time...

puppydavies Sat 18-Nov-06 10:37:04

months, even

Baretoes Sat 18-Nov-06 11:27:00

Mine was OP at 34 weeks and I'm now 37 weeks and baby is in LOA position (the 'best' one). I managed to turn him/her by spending 3-4 days with bottom in the air whenever I could to bring the baby back out of the pelvis to give it room to turn and I sat either on a ball or up straight and slightly forward, with knees apart. If you have your knees higher than your hips, it will encourage baby back down in to your pelvis and give it less room to turn. Then when on my side, I lie mainly on the left side. Baby had turned fully by day 5. I still find that the baby will go LOA if I lie on my left side and ROA if I lie on my right SO I always lie on my left side just before getting up in the morning to give it the best chance of staying that way throughout the day.

There are other methods of turning too - acupuncture, manual etc but it's best to do it yourself if you can and just develop new sitting habits!! Good luck!

mrsmalumbas Sat 18-Nov-06 12:12:04

Complete waste of time trying to turn bubba before labour. Babies rotate into position DURING labour using contractions to help them. They almost always go anti-clockwise, so actually forward leaning onto a ball or whatever can be counterproductive actually until the baby has at least rotated to the left side. Unfortunately the laws of nature and physiology mean they rarely rotate around the front. Back labour is not necessarily a disaster and very copable with so long as you know what to expect and use lots of comfort measures, water, heat, sacral pressure. Look for a doula who is trained by Childbirth International as they specialise in training ways to help babies rotate DURING labour. My first labour was OP and other than being long was fine. Second bub never rotated and was born direct OP but also fine.

puppydavies Sat 18-Nov-06 13:35:43

but surely getting them to engage in the right position is going to help the labour by putting even pressure on the cervix?

Toady Sat 18-Nov-06 14:07:19

Sleep on your left side, it took me a while to get used to but it worked for my third, my first two were OP.

MoosMa Sat 18-Nov-06 14:20:05

Not sure I agree with that mrsmalumbas, I did get DD1 turned before hand but she turned back again during labour! Was then manhandled into a good position, turned again and eventually came out sideways

She had a fingerprint on the side of her head from the doctor and a split nose when it got squashed

See her here (scroll right down to the bottom)

lulumama Sat 18-Nov-06 14:20:55

mrsmalumbas......i have undertaken doula training..the course i did recommended jean sutton's OFP advice. Anecdotally , there is evidence it works. As with all things to do with birth......nothing is a dead cert....but if it makes an expectant mum feel she is doing something positive and it will actually have a positive impact on the birth..i;d say give it a go

yes, the baby rotates in labour.....and can be gently encouraged to move before then IMHO....

lulumama Sat 18-Nov-06 14:23:17


she's a beauty moosma!

lulumama Sat 18-Nov-06 14:23:52


MoosMa Sat 18-Nov-06 15:21:43

Now that I've got all you OP people here, I'm just wondering...

I'm quite short (5'4") and am small build, I think I have quite a short gap between my ribs and my hips, and I was wondering if anyone else who's had OP babies is the same? Nothing scientific, just my roving mind.....

lulumama Sat 18-Nov-06 15:30:23

i'm short...5 ft 2....but my friend who is 5 ft 7 had an op baby! i don't know if it is a reason....!!!

i didn;t mean to dismiss the ideas suggested by mrsmalumbas and the doulas she recommends....just think that anything you feel you are doing positively to help get a great birth is fine....

MoosMa Sat 18-Nov-06 15:42:23

Thanks lulumama, I think I'm so scared of having a repeat of last time that if I do nothing I'll be so frightened on the day that it will go badly just because I'll expect it to

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