How to avoid external cephalic version

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Moxa Therapy has been used as a major component of Traditional Chinese Medicine for thousands of years

However, only a few people realise that it can be used for expectant mothers to persuade babies who are presenting in the breech position to rotate for themselves.

The usual treatment for motherswho have breech babies in the latter stages of pregnancy are treated via external cephalic rotation.  This technique sees the obstetrician trying to turn the baby in the uterus by placing his hands on the mother's belly.

Downsides of Manipulation

ECV has been known to cause a baby to go into distress or to bring on premature separation of the placenta.

Advantages of Moxibustion

Treatment with indirect moxibustion involves holding a smoking cigar-shaped lump of the dried herb mugwort over an acupuncture point on the external corner of the little toenail. What makes this treatment so appealing is that the practitioner can instruct the mum to be or her other half how to utilize moxibustion themselves two times per day for about a week in the last weeks of pregnancy.

The average gestation of a human baby is on average around 40 weeks.

Spontaneous repositioning of a breech presentation may occur up to the 32nd week, but rarely occurs after the 35th week so it's not something you can try with success late on in pregnancy.

A Chinese study in 1998 showed that 75% of babies turned to the optimal head down position within 1-2 weeks when compared with the control group who received traditional Western gynaecological treatments whilst another study in 2008 showed no change to the health of mother and baby during moxibustion treatments.

When Moxibustion should not be used

One caveat is that patients who have been diagnosed with ‘too much heat' should not receive Moxibustion, another is bleeding during pregnancy so it is vital to consult a qualified acupuncture specialist before trying this treatment in pregnancy.

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