February 28, 2017
In the weeks before delivery, most babies shift in the womb so their heads are presenting downward, toward the birth canal. This is the ideal presentation for labor and vaginal birth. However, if one or more of your babies is presenting so the bottom or feet are facing the birth canal, this means she is (or they are) breech. There are three ways a baby could be breech:
COMPLETE BREECH When the baby’s bum is down and the legs are folded at the knees.
FOOTLING BREECH When the feet are presenting down.
FRANK BREECH When the bottom is down and the legs stick straight up with the feet at the baby’s head.
This is less important for those of you who are expecting triplets or more, because you will probably deliver your babies via c-section, so their presentation doesn’t matter as much. But if you’re expecting twins and you plan on delivering vaginally, your doctor will evaluate how your babies are presenting before their birth. Unfortunately, multiple babies are more likely to be breech because there is less room in your uterus. Sometimes, though, once the first baby comes out, the second baby will flip into the proper presentation. There is no way to prevent a breech baby; in fact, it’s not always known why this occurs, but a few factors that may contribute are:
• Your uterus has too much or too little amniotic fluid
• You’ve been pregnant before
• Your uterus is an irregular shape
• Your babies are being delivered preterm
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