What is Hypnobirthing?

Read more about exactly what Hypnobirthing is, how it can help you and how it works on our ‘What is Hypnobirthing’ page.

Can you guarantee a completely pain-free labour and birth?

There are many factors that can affect a birth, some of which are outside of your control, for example if medical invention is required for the safety of you and your baby. Hypnobirthing is an acquired skill, so its success is also dependent on the amount of practice that has been done during the course.

As a guide, the Hypnobirthing Institute has found that around 65-70% of hypnobirthing mums do not need any form of pain relief. 69% of women I have taught did not need any form of pain relief. According to the Hypnobirthing Institute, a further 20-25% only require something mild, like gas and air. The remaining 5-10% usually experience ‘special circumstances’, where medical intervention is required. The hypnobirthing mums who I taught who experienced special circumstances tell me that hypnobirthing still really helped, even if they were induced, or ended up with a caesarean. You can read about individual birth story experiences on my blog.

The aim of Hypnobirthing is to help you have a more positive birthing experience, so that no matter what the circumstances, hypnobirthing is still able to help you stay calm and in control of the experience, to ask the right questions so that you stay fully informed along the way.

Why choose a drug-free birth?

Mothers who birth without an epidural can move freely, go to the bathroom, walk and change positions easily throughout labour which is important, particularly if the baby is in a difficult position for birth. Mothers can breathe the baby down better and generally faster by being able to stay connected with their birthing bodies. In fact studies show that an epidural prolongs the birthing time and increases the chances of other interventions such as forceps and vacuum extraction. Although using medications for pain relief is sometimes absolutely necessary, parents should be aware that any drugs that the mother’s body ingests will also affect the baby. Mothers also often describe that their recovery after a drug-free childbirth was faster and easier.

Hypnobirthing gives you the best opportunity for a drug-free birth by greatly reducing the need for pain-relief. A drug-free birthing experience is far more beneficial for both mother and baby, however there are occasions when medical intervention is genuinely necessary and out of your control (which according to the WHO is around 10% of births). If this happens, mothers can still benefit from the tools and techniques learnt through hypnobirthing to stay positive, calmer and more in control.

When should I start the 4-week Hypnobirthing course?

The best time to start the 4-week course is between the 20th (after your 20 week scan) and 30th week of your pregnancy. If you are later than 30 weeks, we should still be able to fit the course in for you so please still get in touch. You can also opt for the monthly one-day intensive course in Watford.

Do I need to practice at home?

Absolutely, yes. Self-hypnosis and deep relaxation are acquired skills, which are most effective when they have been learnt with sufficient practice time between weekly classes for maximum success. The time frame with the 4-week course enables you and your birth companion to feel fully prepared, relaxed and confident as you approach your birthing day.

The one-day intensive hypnobirthing course is best done a few weeks before your due date to give you the time to practice the skills that you have learnt after the course. I will be available on the phone or via email if you have any queries after the course.

What types of people are suited to Hypnobirthing?

Hypnobirthing is for anyone who wants to feel more prepared and confident about birth. Often first time mums with no previous experience of childbirth are looking to dispel any first time nerves. Mothers who are on their second or subsequent pregnancies may want an alternative approach to childbirth having had a difficult first experience or they may just want to make it a more positive experience this time round. Similarly, mothers who wish to have a vaginal birth after caesarean (VBAC) often find that hypnobirthing helps to release any fears that they may have about having a vaginal birth. Hypnobirthing techniques are useful for both home births and hospital or birth centre births.

Will hypnosis work for me?

There’s nothing weird about hypnosis, it’s basically just about entering a state of relaxation. You are still fully aware of what is going on around you and you can still chat normally if necessary. Self hypnosis is an acquired skill which can be learned and improved throughout the duration of the course or in the case of the two-day course or the refresher course, in the period after the course.

The hypnobirthing course involves much more than simply learning self-hypnosis, it is a whole philosophy and approach to pregnancy and childbirth.

Furthermore, after the birth, the relaxation techniques can be really useful for helping you to relax in times of stress.

Is Hypnobirthing good for my baby?

Hypnobirthing is definitely beneficial for your baby. Your baby feels exactly what you feel so every time you become relaxed and calm, your baby will enjoy the same calm sensations in your womb.

Endorphins, which are your body’s natural relaxant, released when the body is in a calm state during childbirth, have been found in the placenta and umbilical cord. This may serve a purpose to help the baby adjust to life outside the womb as well as make the birth journey more comfortable. Research has shown that babies of mothers who have had natural childbirth, are more alert and show more interest in breastfeeding behaviours such as sucking and massaging the mother’s breasts.

Do I need a good internet connection for the live online classes?

For the live online classes you will ideally need a minimum upload speed of 2 Mbps. You can run a test on your computer to check your upload speed with this tool http://www.speedtest.net.

Wouldn’t it just be cheaper to buy and follow a CD rather than do the course?

You will find the CDs and MP3s on the market useful for relaxation during pregnancy but not nearly as effective during childbirth as actually doing a course. The courses that I teach ensure that you learn very important techniques for birth and a depth of understanding and skills that are necessary for success.

Where can I attend classes?

You can see where you can attend my classes, with a map and directions here.