Around 3 per cent of all deliveries are breech deliveries, which means that the baby is positioned either buttocks down with legs near the head (frank breech) with legs crossed and near the buttocks (complete breech) or with feet pointing down (footling breech).
Though one really cannot ‘feel’ if her baby is breech, some women claim to have experienced ‘the head pushing upwards’ and/or ‘kicking in the lower belly’. Gynaecologists usually discover it during routine examination. In order to confirm this, they may opt for an internal examination or an ultrasound.
A breech baby need not necessarily suffer from any health problems, it is observed that some of them do suffer from problems of the heart, digestive tract or the brain.
Most gynaecologists suggest a caesarean section for women with breech babies, since it has safer outcomes. However, if diagnosed early enough, some of them may suggest non-surgical procedures like the External version (manually manipulating the baby from outside the mother’s womb) if the conditions are right.
A newer technique called the ‘Webster breech technique’ works towards relaxing the mother’s uterine muscles and ligaments helping the baby turn naturally.