The Naked Midwives understand that 30,000 women a year, according to the most recent research, experience birth trauma in the UK. Birth trauma is a shorthand phrase for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after childbirth; however, it is also used for women who have some symptoms of PTSD, but not enough for a full diagnosis.
Pregnancy, labour and birth is different for every woman and it’s not always the sensational or dramatic events that trigger childbirth trauma but other factors such as loss of control, loss of dignity, the hostile attitudes of the people around them, feelings of not being heard or the absence of informed consent to medical procedures.
Our birth trauma workshops are a specialist designed service to address and alleviate any anxiety towards pregnancy, labour and birth. Our work focuses mostly on reflection as many women who have suffered previous birth trauma maybe re-experiencing the traumatic event through flashbacks, nightmares or intrusive memories. This can make any subsequent pregnancies, thoughts of labour and birth a time of fear and/or avoidance.
In such cases, women can often feel there is nowhere to turn for support as other mothers who have not had traumatising births can find it hard to understand the impact of a traumatic birth. We also strongly recognise people who witness their partner’s traumatic childbirth experience may also feel traumatised as a result.
As practising midwives, we completely understand these fears, anxieties and inhibitors in preparing for subsequent births; therefore, we are here to assist you in gaining an understanding of previous events, coach you through coping mechanisms and fully support you in all your maternity needs.