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Interview with Hannah Barnes, Midwife and HypnoBirthing Practitioner at Calm Births

Have you heard of HypnoBirthing ? Contrary to what many assume, it does not involve any kind of hypnosis. Rather it makes use of a combinat...

Have you heard of HypnoBirthing? Contrary to what many assume, it does not involve any kind of hypnosis. Rather it makes use of a combination of breathing, relaxation and visualisation techniques to support the expectant mother during her labour and the birth. While there is lots of information available both in books and online; today we welcome on the blog - Hannah Barnes, Midwife and HypnoBirthing Practitioner at Calm Births, who will share some information about HypnoBirthing and the course that she offers. Over to Hannah.

Interview with Hannah Barnes, Midwife and HypnoBirthing Practitioner at Calm Births

DB: Can you tell our readers a little bit about yourself and HypnoBirthing?
HB: I have been an NHS Midwife since October 2004 and loved every second of it. I'm passionate about empowering & supporting women through pregnancy, birth and the early postnatal days. Having had my own three babies, juggling shift work & childcare became rather challenging and so I made the decision to set up privately as a HypnoBirthing Practitioner. I have witnessed women coming to the hospital and giving birth using HypnoBirthing techniques and have been absolutely blown away by how calm they are. It really is phenomenal! And so I trained to become a HypnoBirthing Practitioner and here I am!

DB: What is the Mongan Method of HypnoBirthing?
HB: The Mongan Method of HypnoBirthing is the original HypnoBirthing programme, devised by Marie Mongan 25 years ago. In a nutshell, Marie Mongan is a Hypnotherapist who devised this programme for her own daughters birth, and as the results were undeniable the word spread until now in 2015 when it is used around the world!

DB: Who can use HypnoBirthing? Is it only for first time mum-to-be?
HB: HypnoBirthing can be used by ANY woman, no matter how many babies she has had before, what kind of births she has had before, and no matter whether she plans to have an elective surgical birth or would like a non-intervention home birth. The course simply gives her the skills to remain calm and deal with whatever situation presents itself during the birth of her baby. It is a common misconception that it's for first time Mums - and also that we are 'anti' pain relief. Not true! We do find that it is particularly healing for Mums who may have had traumatic birth experiences in the past, to use HypnoBirthing for subsequent babies.

DB: Can the husband or partner of the mum-to-be also get involved in HypnoBirthing?
HB: HypnoBirthing gives the birth partner a real role in supporting Mum-to-be. We give practical tools such as massage techniques, prompt cards for use during labour, and the knowledge and power to support the woman during her labour and birth. I should point out that HypnoBirthing can be used by a woman who chooses NOT to use a birth partner too.

DB: Could you explain what is included in the course that you offer and who is it meant for?
HB: The course is comprised of 5 sessions, each lasting around 2 1/2 hours (or longer, dependant on the families individual needs). It can be held in either small groups (a maximum of 4 couples on my courses) or individually in the comfort of people's homes. Included is the Marie Mongan HypnoBirthing book and the Rainbow Relaxation CD - these are integral to the course. In each session we cover the mechanics of birth and how it works,  practice relaxation techniques and learn how to quickly become intensely relaxed in any situation, release any fears surrounding birth and parenting, give practical advice to the birth partner for supporting the woman, cover visualisation techniques and affirmations and more. The course is always tailored slightly to the couples' needs as it is their journey, and each journey is different. I also offer Postnatal Care Packages, using my Midwifery background I offer to visit the couples in their home once baby has arrived and give practical advice and support on coping with a new-born baby.

DB: HypnoBirthing has gained a lot of attention in the last few years. Why do you think more women are choosing this option?
HB: I think it's absolutely fantastic that HypnoBirthing is gaining media attention, the word is really starting to get out there. I think more women are choosing this option as they are seeing that it works, that it's something they can do to make birth a positive experience.

DB: And lastly, what tips would you give to expectant mothers?
HB: Tips I would give to expectant mothers would be many, but firstly just to look after themselves both physically and emotionally. It is known that if a mother is anxious and stressed whilst pregnant, it affects the baby. So even if she doesn't choose HypnoBirthing, it's still so important to take just 5 minutes out of every day to just relax with no distractions. It soothes the soul and tells the baby that she's looking out for it.

Read more about HypnoBirthing and Calm Births here:

1 comment

  1. This sounds really interesting, thanks for sharing :)

    Pop over to my blog!