June 12, 2011

Belly mapping!

We’ve been learning about the importance of the fetal position for an easier birth and positions and exercises I can do to support our guy getting in the best position. The fun part of the process has been belly mapping to learn his position and being able to visualize he and his movements in my tummy, so I thought I’d share.
The best position for birth is head down, butt up, with back out opposite of mine; he can move into that position anytime, even a few minutes before birth. The position he is currently is a good position even if he never moved from it—with his head down, butt (“the bulge”) to the upper right, and legs to the upper left (see pic below).
When he was up high before last weekend, his legs didn’t have a lot on room to move, but I feel them on the left. Now that he’s moved down some since last weekend, he presses at least one foot pretty hard against my left side several times a day. I can feel the little foot bones with my hands. He must have more room to extend his legs now. It can feel quite concerning at times but is certainly part of the fun.
Below is a picture that resembles our guy’s position taken from the http://spinningbabies.com/ Web site. This Web site explains all about fetal positioning and belly mapping, if interested. The left picture below is easy to discern; the right is how belly mapping works–you draw out the types of movements you’re feeling and then map them to understand the baby’s position (on the left). 
Instructions for mapping:
  • The mother draws where she feels a bulge (the butt) and the firm side of the womb (the back/spine)
  • With words or with pictures, the mother or doula marks each quadrant where she feels:
  • The biggest kicks, (legs)
  • Smallest kicks or wiggles, (hands)
  • The firm back, A big bulge (butt), usually up top, or on one side or the other
  • If you know, circle where the head is, and
  • If you remember where the heartbeat was last heard, draws a heart there.
  • Leave out any parts you are unsure of, and just draw what you are sure of.

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