Practical Advice for Overcoming Your Fear of Childbirth
Wether you’re a first-time mother or not, overcoming your fear of childbirth is an emotional struggle that may arise as your due date approaches.
This is due, in large part, to the fact that labor has always been labeled as a difficult, painful and risky experience for both the baby and mother.
However, this assertion is far from reality. Childbirth is an absolutely controlled process and doesn’t represent a special risk for mothers who have had a regulated pregnancy.
To overcome your fears, we’ll tell you how to fight your doubts by answering the most frequently asked questions. In addition, we’ll show you some practical relaxation exercises to help eliminate any type of anxiety.
Tips for overcoming your fear of childbirth
Having the right information about the process of giving birth is paramount to overcoming your fear of childbirth. Misinformation can be confusing, like reading or hearing wrong beliefs.
It’s very important that you ask your gynecologist all of the questions that come to mind regarding birth during your normal check ups.
You must know that the process of giving birth is absolutely guaranteed by health specialists in hospitals and clinics around the world. They’re equipped with the necessary technology to assist mothers and babies.
To help you eliminate your doubts, which are the main cause of fear of childbirth, we’ll talk about some of the most frequently asked questions among mothers.
Most frequently asked questions
About the epidural
Actually, epidural anesthesia is very beneficial at the time of delivery, since it relieves pain in 20 minutes. In addition, anxiety levels in the mother decrease considerably; therefore, you should see this as a great ally during the birth process.
With regard to its application, this type of anesthesia is one of the most-often used for all medical procedures. For that reason, its effectiveness and technique are more than guaranteed.
About the episiotomy
An episiotomy is an incision that is made in the area of perineum from the back of the vulva to the anus, in order to avoid tears of the tissues in the mother’s genital area. In addition, it helps the baby leave more easily.
Yes, we know that it doesn’t sound very pleasant, but you don’t feel anything when this procedure is performed, because the epidural is already in place. In the absence of an epidural, local anesthesia is used.
As you’ve surely learned during the preparation courses, breathing is essential for you to be relaxed, so you can push better and for your baby to be oxygenated.
However, if you’re filled with fear and anxiety, if you don’t remember the exercises well or if you’ve never attended the courses, don’t worry. Along with the medical team in the delivery room, there is always an assistant or midwife who will guide you through the entire process.
The most important thing for overcoming your fear of childbirth is having adequate information about the process of giving birth. Misinformation can confuse us.
Exercises to help you overcome your fear of childbirth
The recommendations for relaxing and overcoming your fear of childbirth are very simple. You’ll see that you can continue practicing them after childbirth.
Yoga for pregnant women
You can attend yoga classes for pregnant women. In them, you’ll learn traditional relaxation and meditation techniques while carefully toning the muscles that will be involved at the time of delivery.
Take naps and distract yourself when you need it
Take the naps that your body asks for whenever you feel stress. When you sleep enough, it’s easier for the body to recover its balance.
In the same way, look for ways to distract yourself when you feel nervous. Enjoy a movie, read your favorite book and accompany the action with a tea or drink that you like.
A special relaxing massage for pregnant women can also help you recover your peace. If you cannot attend a spa or masseuse, you can ask your partner or another member of your family to gently stroke your feet, legs, arms and hands and the part of the shoulders with some essential oil.
As a final recommendation, always try to attend preparation courses for pregnant women. Apart from learning everything you need for childbirth, you can interact with other mothers, and their experience that will help you to be calmer.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
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- Areskog, B., Uddenberg, N., & Kjessler, B. (1981). Fear of childbirth in late pregnancy. Gynecologic and Obstetric Investigation, 12(5), 262-266. https://www.karger.com/Article/Abstract/299611
- Hofberg, K., & Ward, M. R. (2004). Fear of childbirth, tocophobia, and mental health in mothers: the obstetric–psychiatric interface. Clinical obstetrics and gynecology, 47(3), 527-534. https://journals.lww.com/clinicalobgyn/fulltext/2004/09000/Fear_of_Childbirth,_Tocophobia,_and_Mental_Health.6.aspx
- Hofberg, K., & Ward, M. R. (2003). Fear of pregnancy and childbirth. Postgraduate medical journal, 79(935), 505-510. https://pmj.bmj.com/content/79/935/505.short