February 2013 Moms

How Do We Know if Baby is Head Down??

I keep seeing posts about LOs being head down or breech and talking about ultra sounds.  Both of my friends having babies are having a CS because their LOs are breech, but they only found out because they had Ultrasounds.  I have even seen some women say their Dr. thought he/she felt the head but it was really the butt.  My MWs just push around on my stomach and feel for the head down at the bottom of my belly, and they always say they feel it, but is that really accurate? If all these Dr.s think they feel the head but it is really the butt then how do we know that my MWs aren't just feeling the butt?  I won't have another U/S, so how do we know the baby won't come out feet first when I start pushing??  I feel what I think are feet up in my ribs, but I also feel a lot of movement down low, which I guess are her hands.  Sorry I am rambling, I am just curious.
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Re: How Do We Know if Baby is Head Down??

  • I trained doctor or MW knows what they are doing.  I can tell too by where I feel hiccups, where I feel kicks and just the shape of my belly in general.  I often get a hard lump in the middle of my belly accompanied by kicks to the other side, so I know that the baby's butt is on one side and feet on the other, meaning the head is down.
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  • I'm curious to see the answers to this, I was sorta wondering the same thing myself. Especially since when I sit up there is clearly a part of baby in the middle but doctor says baby is head down so I guess my baby just have a small tush or its just a one cheek sorta deal at the moment XD
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  • Ditto PP.  I have had ultrasounds though, so I've been able to verify that my thoughts, and those of my OB's, are correct.

    LO has his butt up high on my right side and his feet are on my left.  The kicks feel distinctly different than the arm/hand movements, which are more like flutters.  The kicks literally push so hard that my left boob will move. 

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  • Docs and mw are trained to be able to feel. Also typically if baby's heart beat is at or below your belly button they are heads down higher and they are breech.
  • image +adamwife+:
    I trained doctor or MW knows what they are doing.  I can tell too by where I feel hiccups, where I feel kicks and just the shape of my belly in general.  I often get a hard lump in the middle of my belly accompanied by kicks to the other side, so I know that the baby's butt is on one side and feet on the other, meaning the head is down.

    This. Lots of OBs spend almost no time feeling the baby each visit (at least the ones who delivered my son didn't), most of them just don't have the time. When I was 36 weeks last time, my OB felt my belly for half a second and said she couldn't tell and needed to do an internal. I think a lot of them jump to internals or ultrasounds for convenience. But all the midwives I've seen during this pregnancy have spent at least 5-10 minutes just feeling my belly and telling me where everything is each visit.  

  • I trust my MWs, but I can tell too. The baby's head is so much heavier, harder, and rounder than the butt. I also agree with PPs who said hand movements are more like flutters. With the feet, I can feel them through my stomach.

     

  • I kinda wondered the same thing.  MW has been telling me baby is head down since 31 weeks.  At my last appointment (36 weeks) I asked her if she ever confused a head with a bum and she said Yes, but said she was almost positive my baby is head down from the way it felt on me, the location of the heartbeat, and where I said kicks are.  Here's to hoping she's right! Smile
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  • I was feeling movement in my sides for the longest time. When I had a u/s on Friday, the tech confirmed she was transverse (laying sideways). Monday night, she had a dance party in there, rolling around like crazy. When I woke up Tuesday, my belly was definitely lower, and I've been feeling hiccups behind my pubic bone, with kicks and such up high and more centered than they were before. I'm taking that to mean she's head-down. Doesn't mean she won't flip a few more times before she comes, but for now, she's head-first.
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  • My OB feels my stomach for positioning at every visit. Baby's head is under my right breast and she feels pretty much nothing down low. I asked if it could be butt and my doctor was pretty confident that it isn't, due to the shape and how it feels. She's the professional, not me.. so I go with it. :) 

    I do have an ultrasound scheduled because we'll be scheduling a c-section if she isn't head down.

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  • There is a method called Leopold maneuvers that you use when you feel the belly to tell the position of the baby. Many women don't get a sono in the third trimester, but the OB or MW can tell if the baby is breech by feeling the belly.
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  • The only thing that makes me confident is hiccups. If they are down low (or in your crotch, like mine) then it means LO is head down.
  • I only realized that my LO is head down after reading about it on the forum. When he hiccups, it is very low and I sometimes even feel it in my butt! I believe it is his butt that he pushes out from time to time either on my right side or front of my stomach high.

     I have a Dr's appt on Friday so I am planning on asking if they could tell me so I can know that what I am feeling is correct or not.

  • The location of kicks and hiccups can really help a dr or MW tell where the baby is. If there is any confusion or they aren't 100% sure an ultrasound only takes about 10 minutes and they can confirm. 

    My dr doesn't do position ultrasounds until 36 or 37 weeks though because before that there is still a chance baby can flip.  

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  • I can tell by the shape of the lump and whether the shoulders are nearby, lol! This baby really likes to jam his/her shoulders into my belly hard and we can very clearly feel arms.  Sometimes I can even feel his/her little hands! This baby is so freaking active....
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  • During my last few appointments my midwife has been feeling my belly, and saying he's head down, but at today's appointment she checked me for dilation and while doing that she pressed a hand against belly to get a better feel and make certain that he's head down. 

    I also feel the hiccups really low, which is a good sign of him being head down. 

    I'm not sure I'd trust a midwife/doctor who couldn't tell whether baby was head down or not to deliver my baby.... What your doctor/midwife says about where baby is should be pretty on the dot. Most of them have a lot of experience in this area....

  • My OB feels for the head and is actually able to grab it.  I also notice hiccups really low which makes me feel confident his head is down.  For my friend, when they thought her LO was breech, they had an ultrasound to confirm.  They weren't going to do another ultrasound but because they suspected it, they did one and they were right the baby was breech.
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  • my MW felt my belly at 34 weeks and she said she thought she felt baby's head down, but then she felt up high and was like "well, that feels like a head, too".... so, yeah apparently baby has a big ol booty(doesn't surprise me, he's half black, lol)

    but I'll be having a 36 week u/s because of GD so she wasn't too concerned. 

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  • I didn't know until I asked my OB because I was curious. She said she could feel LO's head low in my pelvis, and she could tell from where she hears the heart beat. Now that LO is bigger I can clearly tell when there is a foot pressing close to my ribs, and lately I've been feeling what I'm pretty sure is an elbow in my lower side (it hurts and when I press on it, it feels like a pointed bent joint). 
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  • image +adamwife+:
    I trained doctor or MW knows what they are doing.  I can tell too by where I feel hiccups, where I feel kicks and just the shape of my belly in general.  I often get a hard lump in the middle of my belly accompanied by kicks to the other side, so I know that the baby's butt is on one side and feet on the other, meaning the head is down.

    This. I always feel hiccups right on top of my cervix. I also feel kicks on my right side near my ribs, and little flutters down low that I guess are hands.

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  • Just as an FYI about the hiccups, my LO is breech (sometimes transverse breech) and I still feel hiccups down low all the time. I think his body hiccups and it makes his legs move. BUT I can definitely tell he's breech because i get STRONG kicks to the cervix and no kicks on top, and his head is so hard and round that it's obvious when I feel it under my ribs or on my side. His butt feels similar but more squishy if that makes sense? I've been doing spinningbabies for a few weeks now but no luck... I even did handstands in the pool! Ugh i dont want a c-section...

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