I often get funny looks when I discuss the concept of hypnobirthing with women and their partners. 'Were not that type of people' is a common answer when I discuss it, however what does hypnobirthing really involve and what 'type' of people is it for?
As a One to One midwife I have been trained to be a hypnobirthing practitioner. Hypnobirthing is not about hypnotising you or making you do things you have no control over. It is in fact the complete opposite. Hypnobirthing encourages you to take control of your birth experience through educating you about what to expect in labour (physiology) as well as teaching you techniques to manage your experience. Hypnobirthing involves self-hypnosis or deep relaxation which is practiced prior to birth and enables you to feel calm and in control when the time comes to birth your baby. We also encourage women and their partners to consider the importance of protecting the birth environment, which includes careful consideration of birth partners as well as environmental factors such as lighting and noise.
We are socialised to believe that birth is a frightening experience with many risks involved. Although there is no denying that sometimes situations arise that can affect the risk involved in a pregnancy/birth there is also no denying that our bodies are designed to birth our babies. Research suggests that the level of control felt by a woman during her birth is the main factor involved in her satisfaction with the experience. Hypnobirthing aims to empower women and their partners to believe in their bodies ability and if necessary to have the confidence to question their care.
In my experience as a One to One midwife I have found that being in attendance at births where hypnobirthing is being used is truly inspiring. Women who believe in their abilities and allow their bodies to take over the process as nature intends rather than allowing their mind to control the process.
So to answer the question of what type of person is hypnobirthing for, I would say any woman who wishes to listen to her body and trust it to birth her baby in a calm relaxed environment.
If this is you then ask your One to One midwife for more information and about availability in your area for the free hypnobirthing courses ran by our team. I promise, you won't regret it!
Post by Emma Healey (One to One midwife & Hypnobirthing practitioner)