“Unstable lie” doesn’t sound very good or reassuring, but actually just means that the baby is changing his or her position, which is what all babies do in the womb. In the final weeks of pregnancy, about 97 percent of babies will orient themselves into the head-down position in preparation for birth.
If your baby doesn’t move head down in the last weeks before your due date your doctor or midwife will check to make sure the placenta isn’t in the way, and will probably advise you to take lots of walks and/or do exercises in the all-fours position to help baby turn. Even if this doesn’t work, don’t panic: babies have been known to turn within hours of birth. If he or she still doesn’t turn after you’ve gone into labor, there’s something called external cephalic version (ECV), which is when a doctor or midwife attempts to turn the baby into the head-down position from the outside. If ECV doesn’t work, your care provider may decide that you need a c-section, which is statistically safer than a breech birth. But bottom line, unless you’re in the last days before your due date, don’t worry about what position the baby is in. If the baby is still breech or transverse (lying sideways) within a week of your due date, then talk to your health care provider about options for encouraging the baby to turn.