We all know someone that had a perfectly constructed birth plan that went awry. How do we prevent this from happening and support a natural delivery process for your unborn baby? You can have the best doctor or midwife, the greatest doula, the perfect birth location, the best prenatal massage therapist, an acupuncturist, go to the most popular prenatal yoga class, attend birth classes, and read all the parenting books— but these are only parts of the prenatal care puzzle.
The missing piece of the puzzle is prenatal chiropractic. Most people associate chiropractic with back pain. However, prenatal chiropractic prepares the woman’s body for birth, optimizing the chances to have the natural birth you desire.
Chiropractic’s best-kept secret is that prenatal chiropractic care allows the mother be more comfortable during her pregnancy and labor, helps the baby grow, develop and gives the baby the best opportunity to thrive.
The Webster Technique
The Webster Technique is a specialized chiropractic adjustment for pregnant women. The Webster Technique was originally coined as the “Breech Turning Technique” due to many babies going head down after the mother was adjusted by Dr. Larry Webster, the founder of the technique.
Many women choose prenatal chiropractic care for means of naturally obtaining an optimal birth position, head down or vertex position. Our focus is not to turn a breech baby, as that is the practice of obstetrics. Rather, prenatal chiropractic works to create ease and balance in the mother’s pelvis. This practice restores alignment, nervous system communication, and normal biomechanics to release tension in muscles, ligaments, and pelvic structures.
When the uterus is in a state of ease, proper neurological function, and suspension, it’s able to fully expand and support a developing baby. Balancing the pelvis ultimately gives baby room to rotate into the desired head-down position.
Prenatal chiropractic care can create natural relief from headaches, back pain, and pelvic pain without the use of medication. Although women in later pregnancy stages seek out the Webster Technique, it benefits women at any stage of pregnancy.
Chiropractic Makes a Safer Birth Process
The intention of the Webster Technique is to prepare the woman for a safe, quicker labor without the need for medical interventions. Our substantial progress in recent years with technological advances allows for more monitoring, testing, and procedures to be completed.
Along with the amazing technological advancements have come a magnitude of medical interventions, each with their own associated risks. Adjustments decrease the need for these interventions by balancing the pelvis and allowing ample room for baby to come down and out of the birth canal.
Bringing Balance and Ease to Birth and Beyond
Chiropractic adjustments bring balance to the nervous system. The nervous system is the master control system, controlling every muscle, tissue, cell, and organ in the body. Any obstructions to the nervous system affect how the body expresses itself, and ultimately how the body functions.
Adjustments also help the mother’s body transition into a parasympathetic state. Our autonomic nervous system has two subtypes; the sympathetic nervous system and the parasympathetic nervous system. We use our sympathetic nervous system, also known as the fight-or-flight or stress state, to keep us alive in high-stress encounters. Many of us default to the sympathetic state despite no longer needing protection from the rigors of the wild.
From financial to familial demands, from work deadlines to daily commutes, most of us take a lot of pressure. Repetitive activities like paying bills, meeting a deadline, or trying to arrive somewhere on time still activate our sympathetic nervous system. We live in a world that has locked us into a sympathetic state.
Our sympathetic nervous system is important for our ability to handle the stresses that enter our life. But it’s even more important for our bodies to be capable of returning to a parasympathetic state. The parasympathetic nervous system is active during times of rest, digestion, healing, growth, and development.
When a pregnant woman gets adjusted, her body returns to a parasympathetic state which is crucial for the growth and development of the baby. A mother who has a more balanced nervous system leads to a healthier baby— physically, physiologically, and emotionally.
Not only do we find that women who receive this prenatal chiropractic care have success with their baby’s birth positioning, but it also reduces factors of dystocia. This leads to faster deliveries, less pain, and less need for interventions.
This alters the overall birth experience and allows for better postpartum health and recovery. If you’re looking for a leg up in your child’s development, interested in having a natural birth, or a vaginal birth after Cesarean section, then the Webster Technique should be an addition to your prenatal care.