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Hypnobirthing is a fascinating concept and becoming more and more popular.  Chantel Kismet is a birth and postpartum Doula, a Fertility Coach and Hypnobirthing Educator and lets us know all the ins and outs about the process and answers some often asked questions from mums interested in what’s behind it.

Before Chantel dives into talking more about Hypnobirthing there are 2 things she is keen to bring to everyone’s attention.

  1. That it starts with ourselves. That means as you go down this journey into Parenthood, whether its pregnancy birth or becoming a parent it all begins with us. Our Self Awareness, Our Mental Strength and how we are able to deal with situations that are thrown at us, because as a mum you do see that parenthood comes with lots of challenges and the only constant is ourselves.
  2. Reframing the way we look at the birth process and the way we look at parenting. It’s about changing our perspective and hypnobirthing comes in very nicely because firstly there are different types of techniques and methods out there to help you work through your labour and birth and Hypnobirthing is one of them

So What is Hypnobirthing?

Is this a skill or a technique that actually alters the state of your mind? A lot of people have the misconception that it is a kind of hypnosis where somebody takes a pendulum or something and dangle it in front of you and go like ‘listen to me, I will take everything from you etc etc’

Well that’s not the case and hypnobirthing is a technique of self-hypnosis and for one to actually be able to go under the state of self-hypnosis you have to be a consenting person. And in the entire process you are actually still very much conscious and aware. All of us have 5 different brainwave patterns with five different brainwave frequencies and self-hypnosis taks your brain and body into a very relaxed state into the Delta brainwave frequency where your body goes into a deep state of relaxation.

Ultimately that is what hypnobirthing is all about. This deep relaxation actually increases the surges of the uterus to massage your baby down and endorphins. That act like panadol when you have a headache.

How Long Does the Process Of Preparing for A Hypnobirth Take?

Majority of people are short of time and can be a concern how much time they will need to invest so that the Hypnobirthing process is effective.  According to a university in London it takes an average of 66 days for neurons to kind of rewire and form a new habit and for this habit to become automatic. The key is consistency and keeping the practice regular and if possible daily.  Usually setting aside about 20-30 mins a day to go through the self meditation, breathing exercises and visualisations.

Will You Remember The Birth?

You are completely conscious during the birth.  Although you are in a state of self-hypnosis you are are aware of what is going on and your surroundings so you will not forget.  In fact you will actually fell quite the opposite and remember a lot of it.   When you look at the woman they are so powerful and when they are birthing their baby into the world they are so focused with their eyes closed and relaxing.   You would believe they are in another realm with their mind but after the birth and you speak to them they will remember things that the nurses did and who held their hand etc.

How Does The Mum Behave When Under Self-Hypnosis?

Every woman has a different and unique response.   Some mums go into an extreme releaxed state and very calm and all you hear are breathing sounds and some mums are more vocal.  In fact the element of using sound can help further relax the body especially the cervix.

What Happens If Medical Intervention Is Required?

The Self-hypnosis and deep relaxation involved in hypnobirthing not just applies to the birthing process but when becoming a parent these techniques can help you eradicate adrenaline from your body in its very stressed state and helping you to become calm and composed to face whatever situations you are in.   So in the event medical intervention is required then you will feel more equipped to remain calm and composed and be more focused helping yourself and your partner deal with any emergency situation.  It also is helpful to the hypnobirthing process being more successful if you accept before hand that it may not follow completely in line with your wishes and that medical intervention may be required.  Have the conversations with your care provider to set you up in an environment of what to expect.  So even if you get thrown into a situation where all of a sudden you have to make this decision you know why and are not doing it blindly.

Being informed and understanding what the options are and what the scenarios are.  And then you add this hypnobirthing tool in of helping you to remain calm and composed in a stressful situation.  It kind of goes together.

A Biggie Question.  Does it Make the Birth Pain Free?

Using hypnobirthing techniques cannot guarantee that it will be 100% painfree but lets call back to the emphassi of what it’s actually doing to your body physiologically and then you will understand why it can in fact be painfree.  When you go into that deep state of relaxation and allow the body to breathe right and breathe slow then your blood pressure decreases, your heart rate decreases and you secrete all these oxytocins and endorphins throughout your body.   When these physiological changes happen then your body is in the very relaxed state and tenses up less and you will feel less discomfort.  From a physio perspective with the pelvic floor we are wanting it to be completely relaxed during the birthing process not tense so that you have to push through a tight tense pelvic floor and this gives more rise to possible pain and also tears.

Is It Advised To Get Our Partners Involved?

Yes for sure.  You made this baby together and will journey through together.   A lot of times when you have partners who are able to go through the preparation process and help them to connect better with each other before the baby arrives you find very often that once the baby’s here they’re more loving and more supportive towards their partner and in labor itself.  So yes having your partner be part of it will help prepare you for the birth, help during the birht and also strengthen the connection and relationship  between the 2 of you.

Chantel offers Prenatal Classes in Singapore and also is a Doula and Hypnobirthing educator.  To find out more information and to get in touch with Chantel visit her website