Childbirth is not only about making babies. It is about making mothers who are strong, competent, and capable – who trust themselves and know their inner strength- and a positive labour experience can add to that like nothing else. ‘Mental preparation is as vital as physical. The mind controls how the body responds’, says clinical hypnotherapist Maggie Howell. Research suggests that positive birth techniques can help shorten labour and is also less likely to require interventions.
Labour doesn’t always have to be a traumatizing experience. Whether you’re a first-time mother or have been a mother already, practicing some of these techniques can help you have a positive labour experience:
Pregnancy can be a stressful time for first-time mothers. A relaxed mother has more chances of having a comfortable and enjoyable birthing experience. Practicing relaxation techniques on a daily basis during pregnancy makes it almost instinctive during childbirth. Several techniques such as deep breathing, yoga, meditation, massage, walking and exercising help in preparing women for a positive labour experience. While in labour, it is important to trust yourself and your doctor. Scented candles can also help in lowering the levels of stress hormones and creating a calm environment.
Indulge in Physical Activity
Some of these exercises are recommended before and during labour to prepare your body for what’s to come:
- Pelvic floor exercises
- Pelvic Tilts
- The Cobbler Pose
- Gym Ball Exercise
The experience of birthing is different for every woman. There are several optimal positions for labour. You may choose whichever makes you feel relaxed and comfortable. You can also ask your partner to massage your back to relieve your discomfort. Shifting your weight from one leg to the other while standing or walking can also help to ease the strain on your knees. Your doctor as KIMS Cuddles will provide you with a list of exercises to ease your aches during labour.
Get a support system
As a first-time mother, you could use all the support that you get. Look for people who have a positive outlook on the whole birthing experience. Even a little support from your partner or family members – be it in the form of a back rub, or just a glass of juice – can have a positive impact on you. It will prevent you from feeling alone and isolated in your journey of childbirth. You could also consider having a “doula”, who will help cheer you through your labour.
Focus on the positives
It is said that the mental health of a mother reflects on the child. Rather than focusing on your fears, it might be more useful to surround yourself with positive birthing stories and experiences. By maintaining a positive attitude, several postnatal mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety, can be reduced or even avoided. Think about the wonderful journey of motherhood that lies ahead of you. If you’re feeling blue anytime during or after pregnancy, do not hesitate to seek professional help.
The team at KIMS Cuddles constantly strives to educate you about the benefits of staying positive during pregnancy.
*The opinions presented in this article are not to be substituted for medical advice under any circumstance