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HypnoBirthing Workshop "Mind matters in pregnancy and birth"


Steve Spinks
2 November 2011

HypnoBirthing is a method of birthing that could lead to less interventions and caesarean section operations, plus reduce the need for medication being used during childbirth, according to clinical hypnotherapist Anthea Thomas.

Ms Thomas, a HypnoBirthing Fertility Specialist and Childbirth Educator as well as the director of the Australian Birth and Parenting Network, will be the presenter of a HypnoBirthing Workshop for midwives and early childhood nurses at Southern Cross University’s Gold Coast campus on Saturday, November 5.

HypnoBirthing is an antenatal course that runs for five weeks and specialises in teaching prospective parents meditation and relaxation techniques that can minimise pain during labour. It is practised in 32 countries.

With caesareans and the use of medication during labour on the rise around Australia, there has been a push to de-stigmatise childbirth and return to normal birthing. NSW Health released the Towards Normal Birth policy last year with the aim of increasing normal childbirth in the State. The rate of caesarean section in NSW hospitals in 2006 was 28.8 per cent, a rise of almost 10 per cent above the rate in 1998. There has also been evidence of an increase in maternal mortality and morbidity associated with multiple caesarean operations.

“HypnoBirthing focuses on techniques of deep relaxation. Through getting mums to relax, they can access their subconscious, an exceptionally powerful part of their mind,” Ms Thomas said.

“It’s a process that shows parents that a women’s body innately knows how to conceive, nurture and birth and encourages mums to trust their bodies, and just to get out of the way.

“Fear and tension affect the way we birth our children. When mothers tense up, blood and oxygen is redirected to muscles and organs for defence (fight and flight). The uterus is not needed for defence. The uterus and baby is then compromised, and without blood and oxygen going to the uterine muscles, birthing becomes very painful and intervention is often needed.

“If a mother is more relaxed the body will do what it is supposed to do and the mother will be more comfortable.”

Associate Professor John Stevens, of Southern Cross University’s School of Health and Human Sciences, said the workshop would be useful for midwives and early childhood nurses involved with implementing the NSW Health Policy.

“This is a new innovative approach for many in the health industry,” he said.

“It (HypnoBirthing) is widely used in the United Kingdom and it has been very successful as a way of encouraging normal births.”

The HypnoBirthing Workshop – Mind Matters in Pregnancy and Birth, will be held from 9.30am to 4pm at SCU’s Gold Coast campus at Bilinga.

Photo: Medical professionals can learn about HypnoBirthing this weekend and the way it can assist mothers during childbirth.

Learn more about HypnoBirthing