HypnoBirthing, not just for hippies
The first thing that struck me when I moved to the Sunshine Coast 4 years ago, was how mainstream HypnoBirthing was. Well, not just mainstream (as the men still think it's a bit "out there"), but how normalized and well-known it was for women throughout the Sunshine Coast.
I've been around it for so long now, it certainly doesn't conjure up images of women sitting around singing and chanting, but I guess for outsiders, it's easy to get caught by the "hypno" side of things.
Hypnosis has been around since the beginning of time! It's all about our subconscious state of mind - those inner thoughts, habits, personality traits that are often developed through our childhood years. That heightened state of focus, so deep, that you become so engrossed in a movie, you start to "feel" the emotions of the character. The "autopilot" that got you to work without realizing or being consciously aware of all the little things that got you there.
The 5-session HypnoBirthing program has been around for 30 years, taught in 47 countries around the world, 8000 couples in Australia are educated by this independent antenatal education, and it is taught in 8 hospitals in Australia. It's the same one the Duchess and Duke of Cambridge used for their preparation for the birth of George, Charlotte and Louis. You can read more here about why the 5-session program is the best preparation for you and your birth companion for birthing day- small, meaningful topics in each session, followed up with mentoring and homework, to then reconnect weekly to ensure you're both being supported to get the most out of independent antenatal education.
What do the studies say?
A 2018 study looking at independent antenatal education versus hospital provided birth classes had huge variations: Significant reduction in epidural rates, compared with women in the control group (23.9% vs 68.7%), reduced cesarean section rate (18.2% vs 32.5%), significantly less likelihood of labour needing to be accelerated using artificial means (augmentation) (28.4% vs 57.8%), less likelihood of perineal trauma (84.7% vs 96.4%), shorter second stage (pushing stage) of labour (average difference of 32 minutes), and babies were less likely to require resuscitation at birth (13.6% vs 28.9%). (you can read more here: https://www.bellybelly.com.au/birth/hospital-birth-classes-sabotaging-womens-birth-plans-say-midwives/
What else were HypnoBirthing women saying?
The majority of women from a separate study on HypnoBirthing compared to regular classes reported feeling more confident, relaxed, less fearful, focused, and more in control. They also commented on the ease and comfort of labour and birth and the satisfaction of having their partners involved and supportive.
The HypnoBirthing Institute date from the time period of 2005-2010 showed that:
77% of HypnoBirthing mothers had no pain medication.
45% of HypnoBirthing women birthed in under eight hours. The overall average reduction in time in labour was 2 hours less than non-HypnoBirthing women.
17% of HypnoBirthing mothers had a cesarean birth, compared with the national average of 33%. This is further reduced when women have care providers who know and support HypnoBirthing
There were higher breastfeeding rates, reduced instrumental births, fewer inductions and overall higher well-being and satisfaction.
Want to get rid of your fears about birth, minimize unecessary intervention, reduce pain and make sure your birth companion knows how to support you?
The HypnoBirthing program has contributions from obstetricians, physiotherapists, midwives, yoga teachers, hypnotherapists, doulas and other birth experts from around the world. It is (hand on heart!) the best and most worthwhile childbirth education investment you will make.
Here's what mother-of-two and local Sunshine Coaster, Alix said, after taking the course. She had previously had standard hospital antenatal classes to prepare for her first birth: "I loved the hypnobirthing classes I took with Alecia, I feel inspired and excited and confident about our upcoming birth. This is a big change from how I was feeling before the course. Thanks Alecia!" Alix went on to birth a 10lb 2oz baby boy after a short, 2 hour labour. She was watching a movie through most of her birth. How does HypnoBirthing compare to the "free hospital classes" ? There are no "minimum standards" for hospital birthing classes, no monitoring by independent bodies or even requirement to have an evidence-based approach. There is a very broad focus by hospital classes that stem from hospital policies and procedures- meaning they're often about the hospital, and less about you, your baby and your individual needs. The results speak for themselves, and spending a small amount now, will pay dividends on birthing day and beyond.