What is hypnobirthing?
Hypnobirhing is a form of natural pain relief used in labour. Hypnosis techniques are learnt in the months and weeks leading up to a birth by soon-to-be parents which can be used during times of anxiety/stress (missing your due date anyone?) or when labour starts.
Birth hypnotherapy helps a mother to feel calm, in control and confident during the birth journey. Why do you want to be calm, entered and confident? So your body can do its job to assist you to be able to birth a baby naturally with less chance of interventions. The more stress a women in labour feels, the more adrenaline she produces. Adrenaline inhibits the production of the hormones oxytocin and endorphins. These are two natural pain relievers and help a women’s body to give birth. Women who use birth hypnosis/hypnobirthing techniques report a decrease in the amount of/severity of pain felt, length of labour and less use of interventions (epidural, forceps etc).
Birth is unpredictable and while birth hypnotherapy can’t guarantee you a straightforward, pain free birth it can be used no matter what happens in your birth journey to make you feel calm, confident and relaxed. This is crucial if you have to make some important decisions during labour. Birth hypnosis allows you to do so from a centred and calm state of mind.
How does it work?
You don’t have to be unconscious to work/reach the subconscious. All you need to do is be relaxed and comfortable. Your birth hypnotherapy instructor will make sure you feel relaxed and safe. Your subconscious mind won’t let you do anything that is against your belief system so you don’t need to worry about ‘being controlled’ by someone else or doing something against your will.
When you do a birth hypnotherapy course you will hear hypnotic scripts being read to you – these can be stories, tales or visualisations. These scripts aim to help your mind and body associate birth with being a calm and natural part of life. You can listen to these scripts or recordings as many times as you like, at times you wish, to help promote these feelings of relaxation and calmness.
A big part of hypnotherapy is language. When you do a hypnobirthing course you will learn how language can be used to help create a positive and supportive environment for the birthing mother.
Words that trigger pain, fear or shock are replaced with more positive, caring language which also helps a mother tap into the language she has heard in the hypnobirthing scripts. In your classes you will also find out how the body works for a mother in labour and what things you can do to optimise her birth experience. Sounds like a biology class but fear not, it’s way more fun!
To find out about the benefits the personalised hypnobirthing go to www.thefirstcuddle.com/services.
How do I learn birth hypnotherapy?
Courses range from 2 – 10 hours and can be done in 1 – 6 sessions. Most couples do sessions in small groups or private sessions but you can use books, podcasts and download recordings from websites. In the sessions you will be taught how the body works during birth and what you can do to promote the best conditions for yourself/your partner in labour. You will also be given some scripts to listen to and/or read to your partner when she goes into labour to help her feel more relaxed.
The instructor will read you some scripts so you know what it feels like to be gently hypnotised and relaxed. Most people comment that they are surprised at how awake they are during a hypnobirthing session. The more you practise listening to these scripts, the more likely you are to remember them during labour. I’m a big fan of personalised birth hypnotherapy, because like all hypnotherapy, it works best if it matches memories or positive thoughts/beliefs you already have about birth. To book your personalised hypnobirthing sessions with me, click here.