Sunday June 22, 2014 at 4:09pm

Isn’t it funny how something can occupy your thoughts and then, out of the blue, you suddenly notice information about the very same thing? I think it’s called selective perception. Anyway, having confessed to all and sundry my fears regarding childbirth, I came across an interesting article in our local newspaper regarding hypnosis and pain-free childbirth. Definitely worth investigating! For those of you who, like me, were not aware of such things, here’s some information.

It was in the 1930’s that Dr Dick-Read, an English obstetrician who wanted to promote natural childbirth, first proposed the idea of reducing pain in childbirth by using hypnotherapy. The idea is that pain experienced in labour is the result of fear, which causes tension in the body, panic and lack of control – all impeding the body’s ability to give birth normally. He wrote, ‘In no other animal species is the process of birth apparently associated with any suffering, pain or agony, except where pathology exists or in an unnatural state, such as captivity.’ He concluded that fear and tension were responsible for 95 per cent of labour pain, which could be eliminated through relaxation techniques. Hypnobirthing, involving relaxation, meditation and visualization, is claimed to address these issues and aims to use the mind to seize control of the birthing process.

Research into hypnobirthing has produced mixed results but has been sufficiently encouraging for the NHS to carry out clinical trials into its effectiveness. Some studies support the claims that it leads to

  • Decreased average length of labour
  • Lower cesarean section rates
  • Decreased use of pain relief medication such as gas and epidurals
  • Increased ease and comfort of labour and birth
  • Greater emotional satisfaction for mothers as a result of having their birthing partners informed, involved and supportive.

Apparently, Kate Middleton used hypnobirthing for her pregnancy and birth so it has the royal seal of approval! I know when I have children I will be trying to use this technique too!





Hope you found this useful :)

Love from Chamomile Baby x x

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