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C-Section Side Effect: 'Pent-Up Energy'?

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Guest blogger Jessica Katz: When my daughter was born, she came by C-section. This was after 29 hours of labor and two epidurals. I tried to have a vaginal birth, but I was never, ever able to dilate past eight centimeters, and time was running out. So my birth plan was derailed, but I had a healthy daughter.

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Then someone told me that my daughter may need to see a cranial-sacral specialist because of the C-section. Why?, I wondered. Turns out, there's a theory that since babies born through C-section do not pass through the vaginal canal, they have pent-up energy and stress that was never released at birth. Is this true? 

Experts say that birth is one of the most dramatic experiences of our lives. The experience influences how each of us views the world. It shapes our personalities and our responses to the environment and with other people. Birth trauma is defined as "a mechanical force or psychological injury that happens near or at the time of delivery." There are many signs and symptoms of birth trauma, including hypersensitivity (to sound, movement, diaper changes, etc.), poor sleep, irritability, poor feeding, stiffness and lethargy/low energy or (at the other extreme) hyperexcitability. 

In a vaginal birth, the bones of the head go through normal compression/decompression while exiting the birth canal. The compression and decompression prepare the baby for atmospheric changes from a fluid-based environment to an air-based one. When a baby is delivered by C-section, this process is eliminated, and restrictions in the skull can occur. 

Babies are subjected to compressive forces during their passage through the birth canal, which can cause trauma in the tissues. In order to function fully, the compressive forces benefit from relaxing and releasing. Tension and stuck spots can cause restrictions and imbalances in a baby's system, potentially giving rise to issues such as colic, sucking problems and respiratory difficulties. 

Did my baby have pent-up stress and tension because she was yanked from my belly instead of going through the vaginal birthing process? I did not notice anything too strange, except that she was born with her days and nights confused ....

According to research, cranial-sacral therapy (CST) can help ease the trauma from birth. CST can minimize or eliminate the effects of the delivery process by gently facilitating the natural healing mechanism already present in every baby. This touch therapy promotes the ultimate relaxation within your baby's body, which facilitates the natural healing process. Babies often have some area of tightness or compression that causes undue tension or stress on the nerves. The tight or compressed areas are very gently softened, enabling your baby to let go of this stress

My daughter never received CST, because I never noticed any symptoms that worried me. Coming into the world seems like a very stressful event however it happens. I can't imagine how it must feel to be yanked out of a safe womb into this world. So I am open to all theories. Even this one.

next: I Wanted a Baby; He Didn't
26 comments so far | Post a comment now
Sonya Seidle February 14, 2011, 1:11 AM

It could be I shouldn’t have overlooked my meds today nonetheless what you’re indicating makes very little sense.

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Your pages had some errors although I browsed. I do not know if it really is something wrong or simply my browser acting up but I assumed I let you know.

target wedding registry checklist March 8, 2011, 3:19 AM

I guess what I’m trying to say is, I don’t think you can measure life in terms of years. I think longevity doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with happiness. I mean happiness comes from facing challenges and going out on a limb and taking risks. If you’re not willing to take a risk for something you really care about, you might as well be dead.

birthday gift ideas for wife March 8, 2011, 2:23 PM

It is difficult to make a man miserable while he feels worthy of himself and claims kindred to the great God who made him.

Chang Curington March 11, 2011, 4:11 PM

excellent info, keep it coming…

Gwendolyn Olvedo March 16, 2011, 4:58 AM

Some wonderful visuals here.

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