Study finds mindfulness training may lessen the risk of cesareans

Conducted between the Spring of 2014 through the Summer of 2017, a study of 141 pregnant women with high fear of childbirth was evaluated.

According to the study, released in the journal Birth, the objective of the research was to “investigate whether mindfulness-based childbirth and parenting (MBCP) or enhanced care as usual (ECAU) for expectant couples decreases fear of childbirth (FOC) and nonurgent obstetric interventions during labor and improves newborn outcomes.”

Among the participants, half received mindfulness training, provided by the midwives, while the remaining half received additional guidance on their fears of childbirth.

By the study’s conclusion, researchers uncovered that, at birth, the participants who took part in mindfulness sessions used epidural anesthesia about 36 percent less, in comparison to the control group. 51 percent underwent fewer unnecessary cesarean births.

“MBCP for pregnant couples reduces mothers’ fear of childbirth, nonurgent obstetric interventions during childbirth and may improve childbirth outcomes. MBCP adapted for pregnant women with high FOC and their partners appears an acceptable and effective intervention for midwifery care,” the study concluded.

The study received funding from the Netherlands Health Insurance Association and the Research Institute Child Development and Education.

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