Hypnobirthing may, in fact, be the right option for many new parents. Hypnobirthing has been a practice for more than 30 years, putting together calming methods, breathing exercises, and self-hypnosis.
Although this basic concept has been around for decades, the precise word was coined by hypnotherapist Marie Mongan in the 1989 book HypnoBirthing: A Celebration of Life. Her views are inspired by Dr. Jonathan Dye and Dr. Grantly Dick-Read.
To learn more about this birthing practice and how to prepare for childbirth at home, check out this article. We will tell you everything you need to know about hypnobirthing meditation.
What Is The Whole Concept Behind Hypnobirthing?
Hypnobirthing, at its heart, seeks to help a woman cope with any fear or anxiety she may have about labor. It requires various methods of relaxation and self-hypnosis to help the body relax before and during birth and labor.
The theory is that the birth will happen quicker and more painlessly when the body and mind are in a fully relaxed state since the body is not battling the natural cycle.
How It Works
You and your partner perform deep-breathing exercises for five days. This will last for two and a half hours each, not all that different from what you would do in a yoga or meditation class.
The woman tries to relax her muscles and both of you tap into a state of relaxation (again familiar turf for those practicing meditation).
Around the same time, your mentor guides you through directed imagery that helps you think of labor as warm and enticing, rather than unpleasant and terrifying. It will be a part of the process of “self-hypnosis.”
Hypnobirth is intended to ease some of the distress that comes with childbirth.
Rather than being seen as something risky — a traumatic, unpleasant occurrence that requires a doctor to administer medications and likely surgery to achieve success, it is a way for a parent to concentrate on the situation under their influence.
How You Can Do It To Prepare For Home Birth
The Midwife of Hypnobirthing shares two of those breathing methods. You breathe deeply through the nose in the first, then out the nose. Breathe in to a four-count and out to the seven-count.
The second is close in technique. You follow the same pattern of deep-breathing, but lengthen the inhalation to the count of seven, and keep the exhalation to the count of seven.
This will help to stimulate your parasympathetic nervous system by breathing in this way, giving you some relaxing vibes.
Focusing on positive thoughts and phrases is another helpful strategy. You can say “surge” or “wave” for a more positive perspective rather than use the word “contraction” to explain the tightenings during labor.
Another example is replacing membranes with the name “release” in place of “rupture.”
Other methods include guided imagery, where you might imagine something like a flower opening to help you calm your body. And use music and meditation to further calm you as well.
The aim is to experience birth in a similar state to daydreaming by using these techniques. You will be completely conscious of what’s happening to you but you will be able to come and go out of hypnosis as you like.
You will also become more comfortable, taking the body out of the fight-or-flight mode that can be caused by a birth room’s unfamiliar environment. In addition, you will be more able to handle pain and stress hormones via endorphin releases.
Is This Effective?
There is usually a shortage of work on strategies for childbirths. This is not the case for Hypnobirthing, though. Indeed there is the efficacy of self-hypnosis for pregnancy and labor.
Some studies have shown that women who use Hypnobirthing are more likely to identify as optimistic about their births. They also show less anxiety, increased control level, and reduced medical intervention use.
A small Australian study found that women who used Hypnobirthing reported a concentrated feeling, were more optimistic, more relaxed, less anxious, and more managed.
In fact, 51 percent of the participants in this study did not use pain medication during labor.
Many self-hypnosis and birth trials, on the other hand, have found no conclusive benefits.
Research published in BJOG contrasted women who were subjected to childbirth hypnosis training (but not explicitly Hypnobirthing) to those who did not undergo this additional training.
For both the hypnosis category and the alternative, epidural use was the same. However, after birth, women who received training in self-hypnosis showed less fear and anxiety.