Almost every woman is afraid of giving birth. Having listened to friends and relatives who have already passed through this, they get even more scared. Fear of painful childbirth accompanies a woman throughout the entire pregnancy. To help future mothers cope with these unpleasant sensations, Dr. Marie Mongan has created a unique technique called hypnobirthing. What is it and how to apply it in practice? Let’s find out.
What Is Hypnobirthing?
Hypnobirthing is a kind of philosophy aimed at helping a woman perceive pregnancy and childbirth as natural processes, learn to think positively and establish a psychological connection with an unborn baby. The future mother develops a special technique of self-hypnosis, thanks to which she practically does not feel pain in childbirth. She learns to achieve a relaxed state but does not lose touch with reality and her own body.
During the course preparation for hypnobirthing, the future mother learns to breathe properly. So, during the birth, she can be in a state of easy trance. The breathing exercises resemble yoga.
Another key point of preparation is visualization. A woman learns to “see” her child, to understand what is happening to the baby at every moment of time. No less attention is paid to meditation and self-hypnosis. It is achieved by the daily pronouncing of affirmations. These are the statements that a woman reads, dictates, mentally repeats to herself, tuning to the positive outcome of childbirth.
Hypnobirthing: A Modern Wonder or a Natural Process of Being Calm?
Hypnobirthing is a modern author’s method of self-hypnosis widely spread in the USA and Europe. Classes are conducted by specialists in the field of hypnosis, medicine, and psychology. After all, it is important to teach pregnant women to prepare for the crucial moment, to control their feelings, to concentrate, and to relax.
You can try to master this technique by yourself by reading the relevant literature. But, obviously, attending training courses will be more effective.
It is not surprising that a woman (Marie Mongan) became the founder of the method of hypnobirthing. Who if not a woman will be able to understand all the feelings during childbirth? Marie Mongan has combined all her scientific assumptions into a new and effective way to help pregnant women.
The very first child born by hypnobirthing way was her grandson. Marie’s daughter remained extremely calm throughout the entire process of birth.
Hypnobirthing is aimed not only at painlessly giving birth but also at preparing for motherhood and establishing an interaction on the unconscious and sensual levels with the unborn baby.
Every woman knows that giving birth is painful. Many women expecting a child are very scared of the process of the delivery. That’s why it is very important to learn how to take control over your own body and spirit.
Preparing for Hypnobirthing
The technique is based on three elements that a woman must overcome: fear, tension, and pain. In special classes, pregnant women are offered:
- Viewing video of real hypnobirthing delivery,
- Watching videos and movies that help to relax,
- Listening to pleasant music in order to distract from the problem and switch attention,
- Autogenic training – pronunciation of a number of facts that a woman needs to accept. The aim is to switch consciousness,
- Breathing and calming exercises.
Before giving birth, it is important to be morally ready for the appearance of the baby, to know how to take care of the child and be able to guess the baby’s desires. It is not so easy to plunge into the world of beautiful thoughts and images for a while, and then to leave this state for the time of the delivery pains. That’s why it is necessary to work out all the exercises to automaticity. This is the basis of hypnobirthing.
What Are the Advantages of Hypnobirthing?
The statistics of the International Hypnobirthing Organization prove that this technique reduces the duration of labor and the number of medical interventions during childbirth. In addition, 90% of Hypno-moms give birth naturally without the use of epidural anesthesia.
As to the effect of self-hypnosis on the pregnant woman’s body, there are also a number of advantages:
- Hypnosis reduces the fear of childbirth.
- The risk of postpartum complications in the mother and her child is lower.
- Hypnosis significantly reduces the level of anxiety during pregnancy and childbirth.
As you know, the process of birth largely depends on the woman. Therefore, it is important to focus not on your pain but on the baby being born healthy. Undoubtedly, with the right attitude, the process of the baby’s appearance will be less painful.
According to the research, the risk of cesarean section and complicated delivery increases because of the anxious state of the pregnant woman, her fears, and lack of self-confidence. After the acquaintance with the technique of hypnobirthing, such problems will disappear.
During labor, there may be a need to use medications for pain relief or stimulation. The use of hypnobirthing technique reduces the likelihood of this. Also, hypnobirthing reduces the risk of side-effects.
Hypnobirthing is also preferable if a woman has previously experienced allergic reactions to certain medications.
Studies About Hypnobirthing
According to foreign studies, in women who used the method of hypnobirthing, the period of delivery pains decreases. The probability of complications and the development of postpartum depression decreases as well. Women recover more quickly after childbirth. What’s more, they find contact with their own baby much easier and understand the baby’s needs much better.
Due to the fact that the muscles of the mother are completely relaxed, the child who has occupied the wrong position in the uterus may even turn at the last moment.
Children whose mothers practiced hypnobirthing are calm, less capricious, and less likely to have colics.
Disadvantages of Hypnobirthing
Despite the widespread popularity of hypnobirthing, not all doctors welcome the practice of self-introduction of a pregnant woman into a trance. Hypnosis which is a change in the state of consciousness has not yet been fully studied. Therefore, some experts believe that any interference in the work of the psyche is fraught with unpredictable consequences.
In fact, hypnobirthing is related to trance only indirectly. And yet, if a woman decides to learn the practice of hypnobirthing she should remember that it is better to do it under the supervision of a professional. It usually takes 4-5 full-time 2-3 hours sessions with a hypnotherapist who knows the Mongan’s technique.
The personal mood of the pregnant woman, her worldview, her ability to concentrate is more important. For a woman who is skeptical about hypnobirthing, it will be difficult to enter the state of even an easy trance. Especially if you master the methodology independently, according to the book.
No less important is the qualification of a specialist. A professional will dispel any doubts of a woman and explain the essence of the process itself. The amateur will, vice versa, achieve the opposite result.
Self-Preparation for Hypnobirthing
If you have firmly decided to study the technique of hypnobirthing and couldn’t find a certified specialist, then you can try to master the methodology by yourself. In order to do this, it is better to purchase only certified methodological aids.
The main thing during the classes is to completely relax. Turn off the phones, computer, TV, so that nothing distracts your attention. Remember that the power of self-confidence and belief in one’s own abilities can truly work wonders.
Positive Sides of Hypnobirthing
The statistics show that Hypnobirthing, in the first place, reduces the duration of labor. The average duration of Hypnobirthing is 6.5 hours in comparison with the average duration of usual births of 10.5 hours.
Also, the number of medical interventions is significantly lower. In women practicing hypnobirthing, the risk of cesarean section is 2 times less, and there are twice fewer cases of using artificial oxytocin. The incidence of episiotomy in childbirth is reduced by 35%.
Women practicing hypnobirthing are giving birth naturally without the use of epidural anesthesia in 90% of cases.
Is Hypnobirthing Really Less Painful?
The pain threshold is subjective for each person. But approximately 10-15% of women say that everything went very easily and even pleasantly. The rest of the sensations will be quite intense but the more a woman relaxes, the easier it will be to give birth.
Exercises that moms are learning in courses on hypnobirthing help to solve most of the psychological problems and attitudes that interfere with the natural process of childbirth.
Marie Mongan recommends taking the course as early as possible in order to thoroughly work out all the techniques and bring them to automaticity. The courses are usually for couples. The father/husband also takes part in the preparation of the future mother and in the process of delivery itself. Thus, a mother receives tremendous psychological support. But, still, a woman can learn hypnobirthing practice alone and by herself.