Learn about the benefits of mindfulness and the science that backs it up.
There is now scientific evidence demonstrating that women who take a mindful approach to childbirth preparation can reduce their pain during labour and also reduce the risks of postnatal depression (1).
Researchers have also discovered that meditators have significantly lower pain sensitivity (2). Pain reduction can help you have an easier pregnancy, delivery, and recovery, no matter what your birth plan looks like.
BUILDS A STRONG BOND
Mothers who mindfully connect with their baby during pregnancy are more likely to interact in a more positive way with their infant after it is born, according to a study carried out at the University of Cambridge. Interaction is important for helping infants learn and develop. (3)
HELPS PROMOTE SLEEP
Meditation is like magic for insomniac soon to be moms, the ancient practice has been shown to strengthen the most important REM sleep brain region (the "Pons").
Mindfulness heightons levels of melatonin, which improves our quality of sleep and mood, meaning that both mother and baby feel more calm and rested.
REDUCES RISK OF PND
At least 1 in 10 women experience postpartum depression, although the prevalence may actually be much higher as it so often goes undiagnosed. Mindfulness practices have been associated with reduced depression during and following pregnancy, which may improve psychological health of both mother and baby.
Sources and References
1. Hofmann, S. G., Grossman, P., & Hinton, D. E. (2011). Loving-kindness and compassion meditation: Potential for psychological interventions. Clinical Psychology Review, 31(7), 1126-1132.1.
2. Marchand, W. R. (2012). Mindfulness-based stress reduction, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, and Zen meditation for depression, anxiety, pain, and psychological distress. Journal of Psychiatric Practice, 18(4), 233-252.
4. Olooto, W.E., Amballi, A.A., & Banjo, T.A. (2012). A review of female infertility: Important etiological factors and management. Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology Research, 2(3), 379-385.