The Webster Technique: Providing a Safer Natural Birth for Mom and Baby

Hi everyone,

This is Dr. Richard Tran from Color Chiropractic in Bellingham, Washington.  Over the next few weeks, I’d like to share with you some of our different resources and experiences around pregnancy and birth.  

Since 2003 my wife (Dr. Michelle Hsu) and I have had the unique opportunity to work with women before, during and after their pregnancy.  Although every birth experience is unique, we’ve grown to understand how pregnant moms feel when confronted with the choices they have to make for themselves and their child.   During pregnancy, some mothers feel torn between what they feel is best for their birth and what their providers or society tell them.
Throughout the US, people tend to look at birth more like a medical procedure rather than a process that organically unfolds.  Birth is seen as something done to the mother rather than acknowledging the unique relationship that is developing between the mother and baby.  This may be one of the reasons why the Caesarian sections in the US are over 30% instead of 10-15% which is the rate that the World Health Organization considers for safeguarding against maternal death.

When mothers take a step back from the medical procedures and fear around birth, they start to realize that there are a lot of great options to help birth unfold in a beautiful and natural way.  One of the resources that I’m developing a love for is a thriving Podcast called Healthy Births Happy Babies.  This podcast is hosted and developed by Dr. Jay Warren who is a chiropractor serving pregnant moms at the Cap Wellness Center in Encinitas, California.  His show has developed a lot of popularity with some truly unique interviews by experts that help pregnant mothers and parents feel a sense of security and empowerment around birthing, postpartum and parenting.  

I will point to some of the interviews in later blogs, but one of my favorites so far is an interview with Dr. Jeanne Ohm who is the director of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (ICPA) and a personal mentor to Dr. Hsu and I on the Webster technique that has helped our pregnant moms have an easier birth. In the podcast, Dr. Ohm not only talks about the Webster technique, but she also provides natural childbirth principles that can help any mother during her pregnancy and into motherhood. Take time to listen to Dr. Warren’s interview with Dr. Ohm .  There is so much value to gain from listening, but here are a few takeaways I received along with some commentary.

-Life expresses intelligence:  We’ve lost sight of this clear and obvious fact.  Women’s bodies are meant to function naturally for birth by design.  It is not an accident that the male and female pelvis is shaped differently.  Moms’ bodies are designed to carry a child throughout its entirety. Pregnant moms can become so dependent on the test and technology from the outside that they neglect to listen to the communication that is happening within their own bodies.  These may be subtle signals from their body and from their babies giving them nurturing feedback on what’s best.

-Our nervous system optimizes the expression of life intelligence:  If the nervous system is working correctly, and not having any impediments to its function, the body will function better as well.    If we can get 100% nerve supply to your body, then the body can function the way it needs to. Chiropractic works well throughout pregnancy because of its focus on optimizing the expression of life intelligence through the nervous system.  It is not only something that can help during the third trimester of birth but throughout the birthing process and beyond. We will talk more about the role of Chiropractic throughout birth in future blogs.

-More about The Webster Technique: The Webster technique was developed by Dr. Larry Webster to evaluate the pelvis in a particular way to optimize the pelvis. This helps babies to be in a better position allowing the uterus to function better and have greater balance in the pelvis.  It is a technique that is used to help facilitate birth throughout the pregnancy.

In practice, we’ve observed that the Webster protocol helps to take the tension out of the womb, balance the pelvis and allow the babies space to move into an ideal position for birth.  

-Disclaimer about Webster:  Throughout the years, women have come into our office with a breech baby and heard about how the Webster technique is a breech turning chiropractic technique.   Although babies have turned using this method, the Webster protocol is actually a specific way of evaluating the pelvis, sacrum, and ligaments during pregnancy with the goal of instilling balance for a better labor.  Misinterpreting it as a breech turning technique takes us away from the real value that the technique brings to restore physiological balance to the pelvis so the baby has the ability to do whatever it needs to do. The Webster technique is not turning the baby the way an OBGYN would (That would be the practice of obstetrics).  It is a chiropractic method to reduce interference to the nervous system, allowing the bodies’ ability to function, adapt and optimize the environment for the baby to grow, develop and come into the world.

-Some other ideas included in the podcast include:
-Trusting your intuition
-Learning to move
-Becoming familiar with birth both in the hospital and naturally.

There is so much value to Dr. Zimmerman’s interview with Dr. Ohm’s.  We will re-visit some of her ideas and others over the next few weeks so stay tuned in.

If you’re a pregnant mom and wondering how Chiropractic can help:  shortening delivery times, deliver with less pain and provide more safety during labor, schedule a free consultation and let us help you review your options.

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