Hypnobirthing course dates

Hi folks, the next Relax n’ Birth’s Hypnobirthing classes will place on Wednesday 27th September 2017 from 7pm to 9pm in Bangor. This is a five week course that will take 2 hours per session.

Special price of £20 per couple per week, which covers all refreshments, materials and support after the classes have finished.

So what can you expect at a Hypnobirthing class – relaxation techniques, self-Hypnosis, natural pain management, breathing techniques, massage techniques as well as Reflexology teaching and practice with Laura from Forest Sole Reflexology https://www.facebook.com/forest.sole.reflexology/ and much, much more.

Please see my website for even more details.
Contact Darryl on 07751 227738,
EMAIL: darryl@mccullaghhypnotherapy.co.uk.
Website: www.mccullaghhypnotherapy.co.uk.


New group Hypnobirthing class 2

Relax n Birth McCullagh Hypnotherapy

Hi folks, the new Relax n’ Birth’s Hypnobirthing classes will start Wednesday 19th July at 54 Abbey Street, Bangor. This is a five week course with 2 hours each session.

Special offer price of £20 per couple per week, which covers all refreshments, materials and support after the classes have finished.

So what can you expect at a Hypnobirthing class – relaxation techniques, self-Hypnosis, natural pain management, breathing techniques, be taught massage techniques to help with birthing and also reflexology by Laura and much, much more.

Please see my website for even more details.
Contact Darryl on 07751 227738,
EMAIL: darryl@mccullaghhypnotherapy.co.uk.
Website: www.mccullaghhypnotherapy.co.uk or search for Relax n’ Birth on Facebook. Please share with friends and family.

Creating a birth plan

PregnancyWhat is a birth plan?

A written plan that is used to communicate your preferences for labor and delivery to everyone involved in your child’s birth, include the doctors, nurses, hospital personnel, and your birthing coach.

Why do you need a hypnobirthing birth plan?

Every hospital and doctor has their own standard way of handling labor and delivery. Many of these standard practices may suit you fine, but others may not. The birth plan is a non-confrontational way to let your exact preferences be known. Many women think they can just tell their doctors what their preferences are ahead of time, but this is not a substitute for a written plan. There is no guarantee that your doctor will be the one who delivers the baby, and even if they do, they may not be able to keep track of all your preferences. Furthermore, the rest of the hospital personnel need to be aware of your preferences as well.

Your hypnobirthing birth plan is a really important tool that not only helps you get what you want, but also helps the doctors and nurses. So don’t be afraid that you will offend them by letting your preferences be known. And don’t forget that the birth plan is only a plan, and you can change any aspect of it at any time simply by speaking to your doctor or any of the hospital personnel.

What should your hypnobirthing birth plan include?

  • Due date and name of doctor.
  • A statement explaining the purpose of the plan.
  • Plans for management of labor (hypnobirthing should be noted here).
  • Preferences on monitoring devices.
  • Preferences on pain medication.
  • Criteria for inducing the baby.
  • Procedures for episiotomies.
  • Cesarean procedures and anesthesia if medically necessary.
  • Procedures for handling the baby immediately after birth.
  • Plans for breastfeeding or bottle feeding.
  • Preferences regarding photos, video, and music during labor and birth.
  • Information on your support team such as husband, doula, or family / friends.
  • Any other information that is important to you.

Darryl McCullagh Dip Hyp / Cert HypB




5 common labour mistakes you don’t want to make

Labour Listen very carefully here folks, your birth is YOUR birth. There is absolutely no RIGHT or WRONG way to have your baby. However, here are a few tips that might help you out. These are the top 5 things (plus one bonus!) or labor mistakes that moms tend to not do or forget about during birth that can make labor longer or result in a less than positive birth experience.


Its entirely reasonable to be excited & try to get labor going more quickly, but in early labor, its important to get enough rest so you’re ready for the main event.


Your birth is not going to be like anyone else’s. This is what makes it so AMAZING. Just because you’ve been told or read that you’re “supposed to” birth a certain way, doesn’t mean you actually have to! We are a tribe of mothers who want to help each other, but don’t feel like you need to give birth any certain way. Follow your gut, it’ll be right.


This may seem like common sense, but when you’re caught up in childbirth, its easy to forget! Seriously though, at the end of pregnancy most (dare I say all?) moms say they feel like they have to go pee ALL.THE.TIME. but during labor somehow I find they need to be reminded. Emptying your bladder will help you be more comfortable and sitting on the toilet is an AWESOME labor position. It may even allow for a bit of extra space for baby to move down further for an easier birth.


Finding your own voice during birth can make the difference in helping you to feel more in control & have a better overall birth experience. If you’re unsure how to speak up, a Hypnobirthing course will help you with that.


Your birth will be unique. If your plans need to change, accept that you did the best you could with the resources available to you. You can create your own version of a perfect birth, even if its not what you had originally expected.


Early Labour, Preterm Labour and Preterm Birth

PregnancyEarly labor, also known as preterm labor, is labor that begins before the 37th week of pregnancy. Because infants born before 37 weeks of gestation have a higher risk of complications and health problems, doctors often try to delay or stop early labor so that the pregnancy can continue and the fetus will have more time to grow and develop.

When labor can’t be stopped and the fetus is born before 37 weeks of pregnancy, it is a preterm birth. Babies born between 32 and 37 weeks are considered preterm, and babies born before 32 weeks are early preterm.

Potential health problems in preterm babies
The earlier infants are born, the more problems they will likely have and the more severe the problems may be. Some preterm babies do very well and don’t require a lot of medical intervention. However, others are very sick and need lots of help. The complications of preterm birth may be short-term and go away after they develop and get stronger, and others may be long-term or permanent. It’s common for preterm babies to be slightly behind their peers in meeting developmental milestones, such as crawling, walking and talking, but most of them will catch up within the first couple of years.

Some of the problems preterm babies may have are:

  • lack of surfactant in the lungs (a substance that helps the lungs stay inflated)
  • respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) – a condition caused by immature lungs that makes breathing difficult
  • difficulty controlling body temperature
  • problems with eating and digesting food
  • infection
  • jaundice
  • bleeding in the brain
  • hearing and vision problems
  • difficulty making sounds, crying or communicating
  • cerebral palsy and other neurological disorders
  • developmental delays

Preventing preterm birth
Once early labor has begun, it’s difficult (though not impossible) to prevent preterm birth, but it is sometimes possible to delay labor. If you are at risk of delivering your baby before 34 weeks, your doctor may give you a corticosteroid injection to help your baby’s lungs mature or a medication (either tocolytics or progesterone) to prolong your pregnancy. There are some instances where your doctor would not stop your labor, such as ruptured membranes or placental abruption.

Tocolytics can slow or stop uterine contractions, which can prevent labor. In many cases, delaying labor can give corticosteroids time to help with development of the lungs and prevent bleeding in the brain. Delaying labor can also give you time to get to a hospital that offers a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), in Northern Ireland, we refer to these units as SCBU – Special Care Baby Unit – where they can provide specialized care for your baby should he or she need it.


Signs of early labor
There are a few sings that you’re in labor and not just having Braxton Hicks contractions (a type of contraction that can happen throughout pregnancy), and we’ll cover those here. But if you’re ever in doubt, call your health care provider. It’s best to be safe and rule out labor early, especially if you haven’t yet reached your 37th week of pregnancy.

Some signs of labor are:

  • painful contractions (you may feel like your uterus is getting hard and painful)
  • timetable contractions where you are having more than six every hour
  • pain that does not go away by changing positions
  • change in pelvic pressure with a change in discharge or back pain
    Braxton Hicks contractions
    Braxton Hicks contractions are a type of contraction that can happen throughout the pregnancy. Some women feel them for most of their pregnancies, and some women don’t notice them at all. These contractions are not the same as the contractions that occur during labor. And until the end of your pregnancy, they should be irregular, infrequent, and relatively painless.

As your pregnancy progresses, you may experience Braxton Hicks contractions more frequently, and they may even become regular. Some women say that they can feel a lot like labor. So how will you know the difference? Labor contractions will increase in length, will likely happen at regular intervals. Braxton Hicks contractions will not.

Treatment for early labor
If you have not yet reached the 34th week of pregnancy when labor begins, your healthcare provider may treat you using medications, including:

  • nifedipine, a drug that helps slow your contractions
  • steroid injections and other medications to help your baby’s lungs get stronger and help prepare him or her for life outside of the womb
  • antibiotics to help clear up any infection that could be causing your preterm labor
  • Some doctors may also prescribe bedrest, especially if you cannot take nifedipine, in hopes of keeping your pregnancy going as long as possible to give your baby more time to develop fully. You may also be admitted to the hospital so they can monitor you and be ready to care for your baby immediately if he or she needs special medical care after birth.

If you have contractions at any time during your pregnancy or you have other symptoms that worry you, you should call your healthcare provider. Don’t worry about being paranoid or a bother. It’s important to ask questions and seek help any time you feel like things just aren’t right. If your preterm labor is diagnosed early in the process, it may be easier to slow or even stop it for a while.


Darryl McCullagh Dip Hyp / Cert HypB


EMAIL: darryl@mccullaghhypnotherapy.co.uk

WEB: www.mccullaghhypnotherapy.co.uk

What is Hypnobirthing?

pregnant woman, Relax n' Birth, Darryl McCullagh 07751227738Hypnobirthing is a complete birth education programme, that teaches simple but specific self hypnosis, relaxation and breathing techniques for a better birth.

Hypnobirthing is much more than just self hypnosis or hypnotherapy for childbirth.

With Hypnobirthing, you’ll discover that severe pain does not have to be an accompaniment of labour.
You’ll learn how to release the fears and anxieties you may currently have about giving birth, and how to overcome previous traumatic births.
Hypnobirthing lets you discover and experience the joy and magic of birth – rather than the horrific ordeal everyone else seems hell-bent on telling you about.
Most importantly, you’ll learn how to put yourself back in control of your birth – rather than blindly turning your birthing experience over to your doctor or midwife.

Hypnobirthing doesn’t mean you’ll be in a trance or a sleep. Rather, you’ll be able to chat, and be and in good spirits – totally relaxed, but fully in control. You’ll always be aware of what is happening to you, and around you.

Hypnobirthing doesn’t require any particular belief system, or prior experience. Some of our mums (and especially their husbands!) have been very sceptical at first – until they experience it for themselves.

In fact, the more sceptical they are to start with, the more evangelical they are when they discover the power of Hypnobirthing.

Just imagine welcoming each surge! Feeling peaceful… relaxing… and even smiling as your baby comes closer to you!

In short, Hypnobirthing allows you to experience birth in an atmosphere of calm relaxation, free of the fear and tension that prevents the birthing muscles of your body from functioning as Nature intended them to.

Why is Hypnobirthing so good?

Here are some of the things you’ll learn that are not covered in most antenatal classes.

Breathing techniques that actually help the birth (and it’s not the panting that most people think they have to do. Think about it – why would anyone want to hyperventilate during labour?)
How to massively reduce the need for any medication at all
How to reduce your risk of needing an episiotomy during birth with a stunningly simple massage technique
How to be confident and informed when dealing with the medical staff – when to question, what to ask…and when it’s time to let them take charge
How to release any fears you might have about childbirth…regardless of where they come from
How to bring about your own easy start of labour with these simple, natural techniques, if you go beyond your “estimated due date”
Most importantly, you’ll know how to relax and stay calm and in control – regardless of what’s happening around you
Hypnobirthing is designed as a structured but informal class format that teaches about the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of birth. You’ll learn why your body does what it does, as well as how.

More benefits

Additional benefits that have been reported by mums include:

Considerably shorter labour and birthing
Signficantly fewer surgical births
High number of comfortable, natural births with no technological assistance
A high rate of success in assisting breech-presented babies to turn into appropriate birthing position with the use of posture and hypnosis (in a study done at the University of Vermont of 100 women at 37 to 40 weeks, there was a 81% success rate with hypnosis)
Highly energized mums in good spirits following births that are calm and gentle
You’ll learn the techniques once for this birth, but then you can then use them again and again, no matter how many children you have
Hypnobirthing techniques work very effectively with home births, water births, hospital births, birthing centres…whatever. It’s your choice what kind of birth to have – Hypnobirthing helps them all.
You can use the techniques to help calm and relax yourself any time you feel stressed out…(we’ve had many couples tell us this alone has been invaluable!)
What you’ll learn through Hypnobirthing is how you can confidently approach a safe, easier and more comfortable natural birth.

We can’t promise you a ‘perfect’ birth – no one can – but we can promise you a much, much more comfortable and relaxed birth than you would have had otherwise.

Does it help the baby too?

Yes. We find that babies born using Hypnobirthing tend to be calmer, feed better, sleep better and experience less trauma, because they are gently and calmly breathed into the world at their own pace.

Scientific research has also shown that the babies usually have higher Agpar scores as well (a measure of how well your baby is doing immediately after the birth, and then five minutes later).

Finally – something useful for the dad to do!

Instead of your husband or partner being a helpless onlooker, they become a central part of the birthing process, helping you to stay calm and focussed on the techniques you’ve been taught.

As a result, the fathers feel proud to have been able to help, and to be an active part of the birth.

Imagine how close that makes them feel to you and the baby!

Darryl McCullagh Dip Hyp / Cert HypB