If you have had a traumatic birth then the thought of the next birth can be confronting. One in three Australian mums experience birth trauma. This can be physical, psychological or a combination of both. Psychologists can help deal with any psychological trauma experienced and physiotherapy can assist with any physical trauma.
How can physiotherapy help? Seeing a physiotherapist with an interest in Pelvic Health can be helpful during a subsequent pregnancy, we call this a “Birth Preparation” session.
A physio can assess your pelvic floor muscles. This gives direction on what you need to work on during the pregnancy. It might be strengthening the muscles, or getting better at relaxing them ready for birth. This may involve exercises, stretches or perineal massage/desensitisation.
Physio can assess your ability to bear down (“push”) and coach you to be more effective if needed.
Physiotherapists can provide education around labour and non-medical pain relief strategies. This includes positions for labour and use of TENs.
They can also provide education about the most recent research regarding birth outcomes, which may assist you (in conjunction with your other health care providers) to choose either VBAC (vaginal birth after caesarean section) or caesarean section for your next delivery. There are pros and cons for both mother and baby for both types of delivery.
Birth is unpredictable, but knowledge is power. Physio can help prepare your body for birth - whichever type of delivery you choose, or you end up having. Our aim is to provide you with as much knowledge as possible, so you can go into your birth feeling informed and prepared.
Birth preparation appointments can be made online.