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Body-Centered Hypnosis for Childbirth

Preventative Prenatal Counseling for Childbirth
With Gayle Peterson, Ph.D.

"Medical research has shown that fear can affect labor by decreasing blood levels of oxytocin. My prenatal counseling program incorporates body-centered hypnosis and techniques for coping which allow a woman to anticipate her physical and emotional response to labor, to master her fear, thus allowing a greater potential for a smooth, uncomplicated childbirth..."
from An Easier Childbirth

This program begins where traditional education ends. Here is a truly personal preparation for childbirth, reaching emotional and unconscious depths.
- David Chamberlain, President of the Pre and Perinatal Psychology Association of North America

This program addresses the mother's unique needs through the important transition of pregnancy and birth and consists of four sessions for preparation.

Birth Counselor Interview
This interview explores the areas of concern to the woman in her anticipation of labor, childbirth, mothering, career and family issues. Past childbirth and early childhood history are discussed with respect to expectations for adapting to labor, marital changes and parenthood. Optimal adjustment to increase a physical and emotional sense of security and well-being prior to delivery is the goal.

Body-Centered Hypnosis for Prenatal Bonding & Childbirth
An audiotape is made addressing the history and concerns of the individual woman. This hypnosis is based on the Peterson method for addressing fears through imagery which helps to resolve anxiety and instill a sense of confidence in the body's resources. It is a method developed from 18 years of research and clinical experience dealing with the physical and emotional experience of labor. Increased knowledge and a sense of well-being and confidence in coping with labor and motherhood is the goal.
Coping With the Natural Pain of Labor
This session explores and identifies the natural coping style of the woman. The father is able to learn how to effectively augment his partner's coping by encouraging her style instead of relying on packaged methods which may even hinder or block her own natural coping mechanisms. The goal of this session is increased confidence in the ability to cope with labor. Strengthening the couples' bond through sharing and deeper understanding is also a potential of this body-centered preparation.
Postpartum Adjustment
This session allows a woman to process the intensity of the labor experience and the adjustments of caring for a newborn. This is an important session which can help a woman process positive and negative feelings, coming to a deeper integration of her new identity. She may include other family members or use this session for herself. Appropriate referrals to community resources and support for fathers and mothers in their new roles and family relationships is the goal of this session.

Occasionally, additional sessions may be desired to address past birth or childbirth trauma, or unusually painful circumstances of childhood or present family relationships as they contribute to anxiety around the upcoming birth. Medical research has shown that specific physical risk factors may also benefit from this method of prenatal counseling and body-centered hypnosis to resolve emotional stress. These include, but are not limited to, prematurity, high blood pressure, gestational diabetes, infertility and early miscarriage.

Additional Counseling / Psychotherapy Services:

Individual --- Couple --- Family and Stepfamily --- Postpartum --- Parenting

Telephone Consultation: Individually designed body-centered hypnosis tapes may be obtained via telephone interview and mail in appropriate cases.

E-mail or call (510) 594-6801 / (530) 346-2534 for further information.

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