New research shows the impact hypnobirthing has on pregnancy and birth has revealed some interesting results. As well as highlighting a dramatic reduction in caesarean sections and medical intervention in general, women who practised hypnobirthing were much more likely to have a positive, confident birth with significantly lower levels of stress, anxiety, and mental health issues.
The research – carried out independently on behalf of KG Hypnobirthing (KGH) – surveyed almost 700 women who either had children under two years old, or were currently pregnant. Most notable from the results are the differing levels of intrusive medical intervention, with mums who had experienced the KG Hypnobirthing programme almost 50% less likely to require a caesarean section. KGH mums also needed lower levels of pain relief.
Katharine Graves, founder of KG Hypnobirthing, said:
“The results highlight the potential benefits of hypnobirthing in saving the NHS time, money and resources. With 640,000 births in the UK each year, and 1 in 4 of those caesarean- sections, the cost saving to the NHS by undertaking a KG Hypnobirthing course would be in excess of £400m each year .”
When comparing the overall birth experience, 69% of KGH mums rated their birth experience as ‘extremely’ or ‘very’ positive vs. only 44% of non-hypnobirthing mums. Likewise, 76% of KGH mums reflected on their birth as ‘extremely’ or ‘quite’ calm, compared to 46% of non-hypnobirthing mums. Twice as many KGH mums specifically stated that their child’s birth was ‘extremely calm’.
Focusing on stress, anxiety and mental health, the study highlights how non-hypnobirthing mums scored their experience of mental health difficulties 73% worse, compared to KGH mums. Using a scale of 1-10 – with 1 being very low and 10 being extremely high – non-hypnobirthing mums rated their stress levels during pregnancy 57% higher than KGH mums, with anxiety levels also 53% higher than those who had used the KG hypnobirthing programme.
One mum, who hadn’t experienced hypnobirthing, said of her birth experience:
“It was honestly the most isolating and anxious experience I have ever endured, and I still carry that with me to this day.”
Following a traumatic first birth, one mum surveyed turned to hypnobirthing:
“KG Hypnobirthing was far superior to what I had used for my first child. It gave me the tools to feel confident, understanding my female body, it’s ability and power, along with the confidence to understand what was happening. You restored my self-belief in me and my body, and in turn healing the trauma of my first child’s birth. I’ll be forever thankful.”
Katharine Graves, added:
“The results of this study provide strong, quantified evidence of the difficulties faced by women during pregnancy and birth, and the positive impact of hypnobirthing on their experience and outcomes, at every level. Most encouraging is the fact that 95% of the pregnant women surveyed wanted to know more about hypnobirthing, which highlights how it has become a more recognised and accepted choice for expectant parents.
“My overall aim is that giving birth should be a positive and empowering experience for all women – regardless of where or how they give birth – but we still have a long way to go to get there.”
Katharine Graves, one of the pioneers of hypnobirthing, has recently released her newly updated and extensively revised 2021 edition of ‘The Hypnobirthing Book