Giving birth: Is hypnosis for childbirth right for you?

Mention labor and delivery to an expectant mom in her last trimester, and chances are good that her heart will begin to race, her mind floods with concern and in some cases, panic. She knows that the day is coming when a force much bigger than herself will take over and her body will govern itself completely. For some women, this is a very fearful event, but for hypnomoms, it is merely a challenge.

These wise women use hypnosis to eliminate pain and fear from the birthing experience. In the past, the word "hypnosis" conjured up images of stage hypnotists re-creating Elvis, or mesmerizing others into embarrassing situations. Now it is common for hypnosis to be used therapeutically in many areas of medicine, dental anesthesia and personal therapy sessions. Even so, there are many misconceptions regarding hypnosis that can dissuade those contemplating this powerful tool.

Here are a few facts:

  • All hypnosis is self-hypnosis; the hypnotherapist is only the guide. A person chooses to enter into a hypnotic state, stay in and come out at will.
  • Approximately 90 to 95 percent of the population can be hypnotized. Willingness, belief and motivation have great influence over hypnotizability.
  • During hypnosis you are neither asleep nor unconscious, and will always "come out" when you wish.
  • Stronger-minded and stronger-willed people are easier to hypnotize -- not the other way around as is usually assumed.
  • You cannot be made to divulge information or do anything against your will while in hypnosis.
  • Hypnosis is merely a way to direct your inner mind toward the positive.
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