A tranquil delivery thanks to sophrologyNovember 2014

Sophrology is more usually spoken of as a method of relaxation. But did you know that this technique also has a proven record in preparing mothers-to-be for the birth? Join us in discovering the principles of a discipline based on self-confidence and relaxation that fosters a calm approach to pregnancy and the delivery.

The birth of a baby is a moment of unique emotional intensity, which leaves wonderful memories when it goes well. But the prospect of the delivery is also sometimes viewed with apprehension by mothers-to-be, particularly when it is their first baby. The aim of sophrology is to help you face the delivery with confidence and enable you to better cope with the pain, so that you can fully experience the wonder of your baby's entry into the world!


A pregnancy in harmony

How does it work in practice? Sophrology uses three main techniques: breathing, relaxation and positive visualization. During the sessions, you close your eyes and are guided by the gentle voice of the midwife. She invites you to visualize every part of your body in turn, relaxing them one by one whilst at the same time practising deep abdominal breathing. These exercises enable you to achieve a different, extremely pleasant state of consciousness somewhere between waking and sleeping, during which you tune in to your subconscious. Once you have mastered this process, you can reproduce it at will to control stress and anxiety or combat insomnia which often occurs frequently during pregnancy.


Moments of closeness with your baby

This state of relaxation is also very conducive to interaction with your child, who will feel that you are fully available for him/her: babies are often very active during sophrology sessions. You will learn to communicate with your baby, to cradle him/her in utero, to calm him/her etc. Precious moments that will help to establish a strong emotional bond with him/her.


An easier delivery

During the sessions, the sophrologist will regularly invite you to visualize every stage of your delivery in a positive way in order to "program" your brain into contemplating it optimistically and without fear. Once you become familiar with the great event in this manner, you will cope more confidently when the time comes. She will also encourage you to create a mental landscape you find calming, to which you can reconnect at any time to draw on the serenity and energy you need.

During the sessions, you will acquire confidence in your body and the ability to relax and let go, which will also enable you to minimize your perception of the pain during the contractions, which on the other hand will increase if you try to fight against it.


In practice

Sophrology sessions are given by midwives trained in sophrology and usually take place in small groups. They generally start at the end of the second trimester of pregnancy or the beginning of the third. You can also continue them after the birth of your baby, which will help you manage the fatigue of the first months and potential baby blues.

To find a competent practitioner, contact your maternity hospital. 

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