Last month, Dr Loh and I took a trip all the way to the States to attend a couple of seminars, both under the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association. One of them was to get certified in a specific technique for our pregnant patients, called the Webster Technique.
What is the Webster Technique?
It is named after Dr Larry Webster, who came up with the technique. In short, it is a gentle and specific Chiropractic analysis and adjustment that works to help mamas by (1) reducing stress on the nervous system and (2) balance their pelvic bones, muscles, and ligaments. This then optimises their pelvic function throughout their pregnancy and birth.
Why would I need the Webster Technique?
Ideally, we want to assist all our pregnant patients in improving their birth outcome. We primarily achieve this by improving the mother’s pelvic imbalance. This is important because imbalance and misalignments in the pelvis cause tension in the ligaments that connect the pelvis to uterus. This causes discomfort for the baby, as the uterus walls surrounding them tighten. Think of it like being placed under tight bedsheets – it restricts your movement and makes you uncomfortable! When we reduce this tension, the baby then has the space to move freely and get into their best, most comfortable position throughout pregnancy.
A deeper explanation looks to understanding what causes difficult births, and how we, as Chiropractors, have observed that adjustments help ensure that these factors do not hinder mothers.
According to Williams Obstetrics, a textbook reference commonly used in the practice of obstetrics, there are 3 components involved in having a smoother birthing process and outcome (for both mother and baby):
- Power – having adequate expulsive forces during labour. The nervous system is the “Operating System” behind all bodily processes, including childbirth. We want to make sure that it is functioning well so that information can be transmitted and processed through the body (therefore uterus and pelvic function better)! Chiropractic care works to remove interferences and imbalances to the nervous system. A well-regulated system can lead to a normal, physiological birth.
- Passage – keeping the mother’s pelvis balanced. Having a well-balanced pelvis is vital to ensure that the baby is able to descend through the birth canal with little to no difficulty. Chiropractic care and the Webster technique works to ensure that all muscles and ligaments between the pelvis and uterus are rid of tension, so that movement and function are not hindered. This results in more ease and comfort throughout pregnancy and the birthing process.
- Passenger – our baby. Naturally, we also need our baby to get into the best possible position for birth! We work to support their ability to do so by ensuring that their mother’s nervous system and pelvis are at their optimum. When that is set, mothers and their babies play a cooperative and connected role.
FAQ – Does Webster Technique turn breech babies?
The Webster technique does not claim to turn breech babies or treat fetal malposition whatsoever. We are purely treating the mother, particularly focusing on pelvic misalignment, so that our little passenger (the baby!) has enough space to move and optimally position themselves, as they should.
We commonly associate Chiropractic care with pain. Even for our pregnant mamas, we tend to ask “should I come in to see a Chiropractor… when I have back pain?”. A new perspective would be, why shouldn’t we see a Chiropractor? All Chiropractic care, Webster Technique included, is safe, gentle, and effective for all mothers and their families. It aims to restore and maintain neurobiomechanical function, particularly of the pelvis during pregnancy. This can be something done regardless of an obvious symptom like pain, and maintenance is the goal of not waiting for pain in order to do so!
We want to support our mamas’ normal physiological function with specific prenatal Chiropractic care that can encourage the natural and beautiful process of pregnancy and birth. We believe that all our patients can achieve this. If you are interested, you can look for a Webster-certified practitioner near you (https://icpa4kids.com/find-a-pediatric-chiropractor/) or contact one of our certified Chiropractors in Welo Chiro!