Hypnotherapy Glasgow Hypnobirthing
Article in the Daily Record 9th June 2013 by Clare Johnston
WITH royal mum-to-be the Duchess of Cambridge reported to be learning hypnobirthing, Clare Johnston meets two women to find out why they decided to use the technique – and whether it really can help overcome the agony of labour pains.
Lucky Kelly Signorini has managed to achieve what most women believe to be the impossible – she had pain-free labour with both her children.
What makes this all the more incredible is that Kelly gave birth to her first child, Taylor, five years ago when she was in her mid-30s and he was in the awkward occipito-posterior position – lying back-to-back with her.
She used hypnobirthing techniques throughout labour, which involves deep relaxation and an understanding of the muscular contractions that most women find so painful.
Kelly, 41, of Ellon, Aberdeenshire, became interested in hypnobirthing as a way of avoiding taking drugs during labour.
She said: “I was a bit nervous about the birth as I don’t even like taking pills if I have a headache so I didn’t want to take drugs to get me through it.
“I’d read about hypnobirthing and after a bit of research online, I found a local therapist
“One of my friends was also pregnant so we halved the cost and had four three-hour sessions with Estelle with our husbands coming along too.
“We were also given a book and a relaxation CD to take home.
Kelly Signorini with her family
We listen to it as much as possible so it was easy to relax when we were actually giving birth.”
Kelly, who also has a three-year-old daughter Amber, soon found herself feeling more relaxed about the birth as she learned the different stages of the delivery and how best to work with her muscle contractions.
She added: “she took us through some deep relaxation methods and described what was going to happen in the body.
“We learned the physiology of birthing and why your body was doing what it was doing.
“This meant we could understand how certain pressures meant the baby was moving through the channels and the way the muscles contracted to push the baby down.
“I understood what my body would be trying to do and that gave me more confidence.”
In fact, Kelly was so relaxed it took her some time to even realise she had gone into labour.
She said: “I was aware of something funny going on down at the bottom of my bump, like pressure.
“Obviously, the pressure got more intense but I wasn’t in pain.”
After phoning the hospital, she was told she was probably in labour so she set off in the car with her husband Ralph.
She took two paracetamol tablets “just in case”, which turned out to be her only form of pain relief through an eight-hour labour.
In fact, there were just two points when Kelly felt uncomfortable – and both can be blamed on Ralph.
She said: “When we were in the car heading to hospital, we went over a few bumps.
“I was tensing so I had a few moments on the journey that weren’t very pleasant.
“Then, when I was put in bed in hospital, Ralph said, ‘I’ll put the back down a bit for you.’
“He released a latch that sent me flying forward just in the middle of a contraction.
“I was sick afterwards but if it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t have had that.”
As her labour progressed, Kelly lost herself in her relaxation techniques, leaving Ralph and the midwife mystified as to how she was feeling and when she was experiencing contractions.
She said: “I used different breathing techniques at the different stages. The midwife kept looking at my husband to say, ‘Is she contracting?’, but he didn’t know either.
“I kept holding up my hand when I was having a contraction but because I hadn’t told them I would do that, they didn’t know what it meant.”
It was a similar story when Amber, was born, just 16 months later.
By the time Kelly arrived at the hospital, she was well into her labour – but her relaxed manner fooled the midwife into thinking she was nowhere close to giving birth.
Just as they settled her into her birthing suite, Kelly suddenly realised the baby’s arrival was imminent.
She said: “The midwife left the room for five minutes and I told Ralph, ‘It’s coming now.’
“She came back in and was laying out birthing information when I said, ‘Hurry up, she’s coming.’
“She had just put the stuff down when Amber came out.”
Kelly is aware of how different childbirth can be for other women and tells every mum-to-be
she meets about hypnobirthing.
And as for the many doubters she encountered before her own labour, she had the last laugh.
She said: “There were so many people that told me horror stories about birth.
“When I told them I was doing hypnotherapy, they’d say, ‘That’ll never work, you’ve never been in labour before.’
“But they ate their words after the event. They were amazed.”
With her first baby due in November, Jacqueline Cahill found herself getting increasingly anxious about the birth.
The 29-year-old, from Lesmahagow, Lanarkshire, admits she doesn’t tolerate pain well and found herself worrying about how she would cope when she went into labour.
She said: “I haven’t got the greatest pain threshold in the world and I try not to think about the pain of labour but I do find that it creeps into my head and I worry about what I’m going to go through.
“Everyone says, ‘You’ll be fine’ so no one’s put the fear into me but it’s just something I’ve been worried about and I wanted to do something about it.”
Jacqueline said: “She’s working on relaxing me and trying to teach me self-hypnosis. I get to pick some music as well that I’ll play during the labour.
“We’ve not dived into the techniques fully yet – that will happen nearer the birth – but the music plays quite a big part in helping you stay relaxed and putting yourself into a good place.
“It’s already given me more confidence.
“Time will only tell but I feel I’m relaxing a lot more about labour now and not worrying so much.”
Pain in childbirth is mainly down to fear.
Women are programmed to believe birthing is painful and most of the images we see are of someone writhing in agony.
When you’re afraid, you tense up, your body doesn’t work properly and you will get pain.
Hypnotherapy is helping somebody go into a deep state of relaxation.
Most hypnobirthing courses last around 12 hours.
The hypnotherapist points to a scientific study which backs up her belief that hypnotherapy makes for a dramatically better birth experience.
She said: “A study in Wolverhamptom compared mothers who had used hypnobirthing against a control group who hadn’t.
“In the control group, the caesarean birth rate was 25 per cent and instrumental birth – forceps or ventouse – was 11 per cent. But in the hypnobirthing group, caesarean and instrumental deliveries were just eight per cent.
“I see all the time that birth can be wonderful and comfortable. If, at the end of it, a woman can say it was the most wonderful and empowering experience of her life, then that’s my reward.”
CONTACT – LINDA ALEXANDER FOR HYPNOBIRTHING IN GLASGOW
07875 493 358 0R 0141 632 1440 – linda..firstname.lastname@example.org