Stress in pregnancy gives babies mental health issues

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Blissful Birth responds to news that stress in pregnancy can affect the development of an unborn child’s brain, causing disorders such as autism and schizophrenia.

Blissful Birth Launch New Look Website

Blissful Birth Launch New Look Website

For most mothers-to-be, one of the biggest sources of stress and worry is pregnancy itself

Research from the University of Pennsylvania's School of Veterinary Medicine in the US showed that the damaging effects of stress are transmitted across the placenta to the unborn child.

Scientists believe it could explain known links between maternal stress and disorders such as autism and schizophrenia, which are more common and serious in male babies.

As part of the research, female mice were exposed to mild stresses such as strange noises and the smell of foxes during the first week of pregnancy.

They found that an enzyme called OGT was present at lower levels in the placentas of stressed mice than in unstressed mice. Male offspring placentas also had lower natural levels of OGT than those attached to female offspring.

Further research showed that cutting levels of OGT triggered changes in more than 370 genes in the brains of unborn mice.

Many of these genes play a role in functions critical to neurological development, such as energy use, protein regulation and creating nerve cell connections.

Analysis of human placentas discarded after the birth of male babies showed evidence of reduced OGT levels.

The results suggest that OGT may protect the brain during pregnancy. Males have less of the protein to begin with, placing them at greater risk if their mothers are stressed.

Blissful Birth spokeswoman, Heidi Woodgate, says, “This research adds even more reasons to avoid stress in pregnancy as much as possible. For most mothers-to-be, one of the biggest sources of stress and worry is pregnancy itself.”

“Whether its fear of giving birth, concerns about being a good parent or the expense of bringing up a child or just worry that something might go wrong, pregnancy puts a huge strain on every expectant mother. Blissful Birth aims to help parents deal with their fears and teach them how to stay calm and relaxed.”

Blissful Birth is a downloadable hypnobirthing class created by husband and wife team, Rob and Heidi Woodgate. Both are Cognitive Hypnotherapists and members of the National Council for Hypnotherapy.

Research has shown that the calmer the expectant mother is, the more beneficial it is for the baby. Blissful Birth teaches expectant mothers how to stay relaxed and calm during pregnancy, labour and birth.

Blissful Birth also helps expectant mothers to understand what their body is going through and what to expect. It allows them to understand why their body is doing the things it is and helps them to keep in mind that childbirth is a natural part of life and it does not have to painful.

This programme has proven itself time and again to help expectant mothers have a natural birth experience, and it is an ideal partner to traditional antenatal classes.

Rob Woodgate is also the co-creator of the Hypnotension Programme, which helps people with high blood pressure.

The Hypnotension™ Programme looks at a variety of lifestyle factors to establish which is likely to be causing or maintaining high blood pressure (Hypertension). These lifestyle factors are then targeted using specific cognitive and hypnotherapeutic techniques to help reduce the clients blood pressure towards more normal levels.

Certified Hypnotension Practitioners are all fully qualified and insured hypnotherapy or NLP professionals, who meet the occupational standards for their country. The Hypnotension Programme is a hypnotherapy cpd course recognised by leading Hypnotherapy Professional Associations worldwide.

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