Hypnosis for Childbirth
Unless your mother was one of those women who has been blessed with a 45 minute labor and delivery when giving birth, you have probably wondered how difficult childbirth is…. really. Like everything else, it is very personal. I didn’t like it at all but I know from experience that it is a lot more wonderful without drugs. I had both experiences, and my labor and delivery times were well over 20 hours each. Shortly after having my last pregnancy confirmed, (she is now 27), I remember having the sudden realization “Oh, no!! Now I have to get that baby out of my body!!” Mother Nature plays this awful/wonderful trick on us; she makes us forget the physical pain of childbirth after a couple of years. So congratulate yourself on investigating the gift of hypnosis for making birthing a wonderful experience.
As I have written in so many of the articles here on hypnosis, I will tell you again that anytime your brain has an experience when you body is relaxed and your mind is focused, it cannot tell the difference in that and reality. So very simply, once you are in the delightful state of hypnosis, your guide, whom you have made a contract with to allow yourself to receive suggestions, will take you in present tense throughout the entire birthing process, in the best case scenario.
The first thing she will do is guide you to create a “safe place” where you will go in and out of throughout the birth. When the first contraction begins (in this dress rehearsal) you will be instructed to leave your body and go to your safe place. When you feel the muscle begin to relax, then you will be ready to go back into your body. You will be practicing this experience of giving birth at least three times throughout the session, ending with the baby being placed on your tummy and you seeing it’s face. Most moms-to-be shed tears of joy at this time in the session. During the acting out, you will see yourself going from your home to the birthing center or hospital. You will see those who are attending you as well as family or friends whom you have asked to be present at the birth. Your “safe place” is not just for birthing; it is a place that you can use for the rest of your life when you need to get away from your physical surroundings and just take a break. It is a wonderful spot to go to when you are just getting used to breast-feeding and the nipples are still a little sore.
With hypnosis for childbirth, there are no drugs administered and therefore, there is no recovery time. You are alert and in control the entire process and nothing can be said or done to you without your permission. It is vital that your physician or midwife is aware long before the birth that you will be doing hypnosis and you may even want to bring your Doula in for one of the hypnosis sessions. Unlike other birthing methods, you are not taught to do a rapid breath, but a very slow breath, taking the exhale to at least the count of five for the relaxation comes on the exhale. When you feel a contraction, it is simply a strong muscle tightening and forcing the fetus into a birthing position, ready to be expelled through the birth canal. The contractions will continue until the baby’s head has crowned, or is visible. Once you go into delivery, there are no strong contractions and it is necessary for you to push the baby into birth. During this time you will also utilize the hypnosis by focusing on the face of your child as you imagine it to be and by this focus, you will be less intense and aware of the body’s changing in order to accommodate the birth. One important thing to remember is this: Your body knows how to give birth without any instructions from you. So do your best to relax, to follow the sounds of your Doula, guiding you as the two of you have practiced. Sometimes the client will want to record the hypnosis session and take it with her on her ipod to the birthing facility to listen to during the early part of the process.
Hypnosis is just as powerful for a C-Section as for vaginal childbirth and an excellent aid for letting go of the memory of the a C-Section should you decide to do a V-Back. It can also remove the memory of any fears or other issues related to prior birthing experiences.
The first session should be no later than six weeks prior to birth. I suggest three or four sessions and the last one near the estimated date of birth.
Do not hesitate to ask a lot of questions whether this is your first birth or sixth…. There are no stupid questions.