So my due date is in about 3.5 weeks and I am thinking about hypnobirthing and visualisation as a tool for managing labour pain. I realise that the proper practice involves much more than a quick read towards the end, but I'm not planning to use it solely, more as part of a pick and mix approach, so if it works for part of labour that will be great, if it doesn't I'll move on.
My question is, do you switch strategies between contractions (sorry, surges!!) and rest periods, or, if you are using a lengthy visualisation like the rainbow relaxation, do you just keep this going throughout contractions/rests in between?
In between - try to breathe normally. Actual surge - deep steady breather, in for longer than out; in for the count of 4 out for 8 was the actual hynobirthing instruction).
I was on a packed commuter train for a good portion of my labour so i didn't bother with visualities / thoughts - other than; 'Thank fuck thats another one down' ' O god that guy has beer. Beer...I can take paracetamol with beer'... 'Are we going to make it home'
Once home and in the car my DH put a relaxation CD on and I think I passed out for a fair bit of the drive.
For actual delivery breathing does change, and in my experience it was very body led. I couldn't not push! The actual term is J breath - breath in for 10 and then breath out imagining a J - like a giant poo. I was so not prepared for how the whole labour felt like having a poo!
I've just finished my Hypnobirthing course (29 weeks today) You change the breath - calm breathing between surges (in4 and out8) and then surge breathing during the surge (in20 out20) in final phase you use the J-breath (sharp inhale and slow exhale visualising it coming down through your belly and out of your fanjo. You can do all while using and of the relaxation techniques. It's worth practicing each breath c5 times a day to get used to them. Good luck