How My Baby’s Position In Utero Impacted Feeding And Health Problems


It began with a scheduled C-section. Our child (Hayes) was transverse, breech, and sunny-side up. The worst place. His head was up into my ribs, cocked, I think about, at a dramatic angle for a lot of the being pregnant. At my 30-something week appointment, the physician couldn’t discover his head with the ultrasound. The consensus was that he most likely at a bizarre angle, folded over. Oh nicely. No massive deal. The physician was not involved. With a scheduled C-section, his place didn’t matter anyway.

I thought of Hayes’s vestibular system. I doubted that it might be developed appropriately with out being in a head-down place. I advised myself (and was advised) that there have been tons of infants who have been breech and turned out high-quality. No massive deal.

Many ladies — most, the truth is — have protected and complication-free C-sections. There isn’t a disgrace delivering a child by way of C-section, and girls shouldn’t be judged for nevertheless their infants are born. 

After Hayes was born, he was high-quality. My milk had are available in early and he was chugging it down. Each few hours a lactation guide got here into our hospital room and watched me nurse. “Any points with breastfeeding?” they requested. “None,” I replied. They advised me it seemed good. No worries. No considerations. They left. Hayes seemed fats.


The lactation consultants have been impressed. “You’re a professional,” one mentioned to me. I felt proud. I had no considerations. That they had no considerations. Breastfeeding felt straightforward. I had a straightforward child. We have been discharged from the hospital in two days. Improbable.

Week 2. Week three. Week four.

Hayes was high-quality. He was fussy, had reflux, ate continually, had a tough time latching, however he was OK. No massive deal.

I normalized Hayes’s habits. He was high-quality. He was sad for a lot of his awake time, however that appeared regular. That was his regular. He ate each two hours — regular. As he gasped for air and chugged milk — regular. He couldn’t sleep on his again – regular. No massive deal.

I believed concerning the variety of moms who skilled this. Discharged from the hospital. Just a few weeks glided by and their youngster has problem feeding. Not plenty of problem, however some. There’s reflux, gassiness, fussiness, poor sleeping, refusal to lie down, chugging milk, clicking tongue, gasping for air, pulling off his latch, consuming in brief spurts. No massive deal. Maybe it was all a part of being a child.

Normalized and dismissed. Hayes was not fussy sufficient to be described as colic. In spite of everything, the lactation consultants had been impressed and the pediatrician had no considerations. Everybody was glad along with his weight achieve. When he wasn’t gassy, he was content material. When he wasn’t crying, he was engaged and even smiled. He was consuming. He was sleeping for 2 to 3 hours at a time. Nothing was nice, however nothing was horrible. “He has the potential to be a superb sleeper; he looks like he has an easy-going character,” I mentioned. No massive deal.

I introduced him to our craniosacral therapist. I had made this appointment earlier than Hayes was born realizing that he was a scheduled C-section. I knew that his head wouldn’t be squeezed by means of the vaginal canal. I knew that getting him out of my physique by means of a gap in my abdomen would put stress on his neck. I knew that it might be a traumatic expertise for him. I had ready myself with this appointment.

The craniosacral therapist adjusted his cranial bones and atlas. Hayes appeared happier. He might flip his head extra freely. I finished feeling like I used to be wrestling a wild animal to get him to nurse. Issues have been simpler. No massive deal.

Week 5.

Hayes’s sucking sample appeared to worsen. I believed that maybe he was only a form of glad, form of sad child. Feeding him appeared to develop into harder. He hated to be on his again and had extreme reflux for hours after consuming. He was fussy and gassy. He gasped to breathe as he nursed and wriggled round continually. I believed the issue was me; I modified my food regimen. I modified feeding positions. I held him extra. It actually was not a giant deal. I continued with the each day struggles as any mom would.

Then it was delivered to my consideration that Hayes’ nursing habits was not regular. My response was, “I do really feel like I’m wrestling a wild animal to get him to eat.” After all, that was type of a giant deal. It was actually not a “no massive deal.” My youngster shouldn’t battle to nurse. I used to be requested if Hayes had been evaluated for a lip tie. I didn’t know what that was. I had requested a tongue tie analysis within the hospital and there have been no considerations. What was a lip tie? Fortunately, I had just a few dental and orthodontic connections.

I took an image of his lip and despatched it round. Responses got here in: sure, a lip tie. The frenulum (the piece of pores and skin) that attaches from the lip to the highest of the gum was thick and hooked up to the underside of his gum lime. This restricted the motion of his higher lip and finally restricted the standard of his latch. I seemed carefully and sure, there was air leaking in on the sides of his mouth as he ate. He might really barely latch and fell off after just a few sucks.

I suppose this wasn’t regular. I suppose my youngster shouldn’t be this fussy. I suppose this was a deal. Inside a day, I used to be on the ENT to clip his frenulum. I used to be glad that I had solved the issue. I used to be proud as soon as once more. I continued with the each day struggles of motherhood.

Week 6.

Hayes was not sucking in air by means of the corners of his mouth. He was not as gassy, however I felt like he didn’t know methods to use his tongue. He didn’t appear to mechanically coordinate his suck-swallow-breathe sample. He would suck, suck, swallow, suck, then pull off and gasp. I observed that he didn’t stick his tongue out of his mouth. I observed that he didn’t open his mouth extensively. He might open it, however it appeared like one thing was proscribing this motion. He might flip his head to either side, however he appeared uncomfortable when he turned his head to the appropriate. Little issues, issues I barely observed.

I made an appointment with our partnered chiropractor. There needed to be a cause why he wasn’t turning his head to the appropriate. There needed to be a cause why he isn’t opening his mouth. An actual cause. Hayes’s atlas was off of alignment. A day or two after this adjustment, Hayes was lastly capable of get his suck-breath-swallow sample down. Maybe it had slipped again out of alignment attributable to his frequent head butts onto my collarbone. Consuming appeared simpler for him. He was extra relaxed. Happier. Not as fussy. He didn’t appear to be in ache. As he relaxed, I relaxed. Nobody else noticed this. However I observed.

Week 7.

I made an appointment with a pediatric feeding specialist. She confirmed that he was not utilizing his tongue to suck. He was chomping as a substitute. She advised me, “It’s bizarre that his tongue will not be transferring.” I felt like this was a totally unhelpful assertion, however she was the professional, so I nodded. She gave him a torticollis prognosis, a biased head motion to at least one facet. No particular suggestions on methods to assist or why this had occurred. She gave me ten oral motor workouts. Basic workouts. I used to be grateful, however I felt like these workouts weren’t individualized to my youngster or to my routine or to my restricted time.

I might do possibly two of the workouts. I advised my husband about them, however I couldn’t keep in mind the small print. I used to be drained and had a restricted reminiscence attributable to lack of sleep. I couldn’t clarify them. I remembered three of the workouts and did these mechanically. Fuck the remainder of them. I didn’t even keep in mind why I used to be doing them. In spite of everything, nothing with Hayes was a giant deal.

Week eight.

My husband advised me Hayes can be high-quality. I agreed. Everybody advised me he can be high-quality. Just a few folks paid consideration once I introduced up his “points.” He most likely can be high-quality. I thought of his future. A time when these struggles would possibly come to fruition. Perhaps in 5 years he would obtain a prognosis like ADHD. Perhaps, possibly not. I felt unhappy. I had introduced an imperfect youngster into the world. A baby who already wanted assist. I nervous I had missed my window to do one thing or possibly I had not carried out sufficient.

Week 9.

Hayes’s feeding was bettering. He was beginning to stick out his tongue. His reflux was lowering. He might tolerate being on his again with out gagging. He was nonetheless tucking his lip as he fed, however he was not sucking in air.

If solely I might get him to open his mouth and actually discover ways to suck utilizing everything of his tongue. I joined a tummy time class given by a pediatric occupational therapist. I discussed that I felt like Hayes couldn’t open his mouth all the way in which. She felt round his mouth, particularly between his cheeks and backside gums. Cranial neve dysfuction. Buccal tie. After all. This made sense.

In utero, Hayes was mendacity transverse. His head was turned, I assume, for a lot of the being pregnant. As he developed, this place restricted the innervation of the cranial nerve to his tongue, cheeks, lips. This was why he didn’t know methods to use his tongue; his cranial nerve had by no means absolutely innervated his oral constructions. He additionally had a buccal tie, which restricted how far he might open his mouth. Utilizing my fingers, I might simply really feel this.

Extra workouts, however extra particular workouts. I felt like I had a objective and knew how they might assist, so I did them the most effective I might.

Week 10.

Extra tummy time. Suck coaching. Tummy time in a manner that labored. Issues have been bettering. I knew methods to assist him. I felt higher realizing what his difficulty was and methods to repair it.

Week 11.

This isn’t a sob story. For all intents and functions, Hayes is a cheerful, sometimes growing, and rising child.


I thought of what number of occasions this occurs to moms. The infant may not be head-down throughout being pregnant. The mom is pressured. When her child is born, he cries. She notices one thing is possibly not fairly proper, however she normalizes it. No massive deal. The folks round her are unconcerned. Dismissive, maybe. The infant is gaining weight. This youngster grows up with a subluxated atlas and a cranial nerve that by no means absolutely innervates the tongue; the kid is unable to maneuver his lip appropriately. The kid is fussy and so is held extra typically. Primitive reflexes aren’t built-in as a result of tummy time is a battle. What might this lead to? A neurotypical youngster? Perhaps, possibly not.

I take into consideration how we (as occupational therapists) ought to supply schooling and assist to moms by means of being pregnant and the primary yr of their youngster’s life. Perhaps we will transcend what we presently do by offering emotional assist to moms and developmental lessons to their kids. Developmental check-ups.

No matter what we’re capable of do, I consider that we must always not let moms and their newborns slip by means of the cracks, slip by means of a crack that might simply be stood on and ultimately walked on. A straightforward repair, it appears.

We are going to see.

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