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Pregnant: how to live your pregnancy well thanks to music therapy?


The benefits of music therapy while pregnant

Music puts the soul in harmony with everything that exists. - Oscar Wilde -


Pregnancy is a time of great upheaval and intense emotions for many women. Between physical changes, emotional adjustments, and preparations for the baby's arrival, it's not uncommon to feel somewhat stressed or anxious. In itself, this is not necessarily alarming, since these episodes are the result of an intense but completely normal hormonal fluctuation. However, if this stress and anxiety creeps into your daily life for too long and repeats itself, it can have an impact on your well-being, but also that of your baby.


The good news is that music therapy can provide significant benefits during this unique time of life. In this article, I invite you to explore how music therapy can help you reduce your stress and anxiety in the long term.



Stress, anxiety and pregnancy: what are the risks ?


There is now data that cannot be disputed. Very specific studies have compared the type of prenatal stress and the effects on mother and baby. Françoise Molénat, child psychiatrist and perinatal psychoanalyst.



To fully understand what we are saying here, I would like to remind you that stress is not bad in itself, since it is a mechanical response allowing us to regulate our nervous system. The secretion of cortisol, among other things, is therefore completely normal. Focus on the different types and levels of stress listed by Françoise Molénat:


  1. 1st trimester stress , or adaptive stress: that which occurs when you learn that you are pregnant. It is absolutely not negative . Pregnancy induces a lot of physical and emotional upheaval, so this stress is a defense reaction to a new situation. It's completely normal.

  2. Emotional stress : this stress often generates fear, tension, irritability . It is very common during pregnancy. Small anxieties arise here and there on a daily basis, unexplained mood swings. But here again, no impact on the health of the child or on the progress of the pregnancy, provided these emotions do not have too much impact on the general condition.

  3. Acute stress : unemployment, death, relationship or family problems, natural disasters, wars ...these events undoubtedly have a considerable impact on our lives, and real repercussions on the pregnant woman and her fetus. Research now shows that these anxieties are indeed associated with pregnancy complications: premature birth, growth retardation, low birth weight, etc.



Clinical music therapy: a therapy that is good for you


Music therapy is a discipline that uses music to achieve therapeutic goals such as reducing stress, managing pain, and improving emotional well-being. It can include listening to music, creating music, singing, and moving, tailored to the specific needs of each individual. For pregnant women, music therapy can be particularly beneficial due to its soothing , relaxing , but also analgesic effects.



How does music affect your stress and anxiety?


1. The calming effects of music


Listening to soft, relaxing music allows you to regulate and act directly on the nervous system, and more precisely on the limbic system, the seat of emotions. Within minutes, your heart system slows down, your blood pressure drops, and your cortisol levels, otherwise known as the stress hormone, are significantly reduced. Suffice to say that it would be a shame to deprive yourself of such a tool during pregnancy, since it can greatly contribute to a general feeling of calm and relaxation.


2. Breathing techniques and guided psychomusical relaxation


Music therapy can be combined with several deep breathing and meditation techniques to amplify its relaxing effects: this is what we call psychomusical relaxation or relaxation under musical induction . This protocol, lasting approximately 30 to 50 minutes, does not consist of simple listening to music, but follows a precise sequence: introduction, neutralization, relaxation and awakening. Each phase is interspersed with a few seconds of silence to promote the hypnoid state . Far from the relaxations of commerce, the preparation of such a session requires particular attention in sound editing or live production of music on the part of your music therapist. The idea of this musical moment is to help you center your mind and relax your body.


So here is my little gift of the day...



Duration : 30'44

Necessary equipment : a bottle of water or a hot drink, a blanket or blanket, headphones or earphones, a notebook and a pen.


  1. Find a quiet place where you will not be disturbed, your Safe place .

  2. Click on the link above, then turn on the soundtrack and take the time to stretch while listening to the first music.

  3. The second time you listen, take the time to focus on your breathing. Inhale slowly through your nose, hold your breath for a moment, then slowly exhale through your mouth. Continue this exercise for a few minutes, letting yourself be carried away by the music.

  4. On the third listening, the relaxation phase begins. This is quite a long phase, so I recommend that you sit well or lie down comfortably. Wrap yourself in a blanket, drink some water and close your eyes.

  5. Last listening, last phase: awakening. First the hands, then the eyes, the feet...take the time to feel your body waking up.

  6. Remember to hydrate yourself at the end of the session and note mentally or in a notebook the effect of this session...Why?


Well, because pregnancy can give rise to a multitude of emotions, which are sometimes difficult to manage. Music therapy here offers a safe, non-verbal way to express and process these emotions. Listening to or creating music that reflects your feelings or your personal history can bring back certain buried memories and help you understand them and reduce your anxiety about them.



So don't forget to write all of this down to move forward with peace of mind.




I think I would prefer if someone accompanied me...


No worries, for those who prefer a guided approach and benefit from personalized follow-up, it is entirely possible to participate in music therapy sessions with a qualified or certified therapist near you, as I offer at the office . Birth Sounds . These sessions can include activities such as prenatal singing, creating music, and musical relaxation exercises, all designed to meet the individual needs of the mother-to-be.



Conclusion


Music therapy is a valuable resource that offers you an effective way to reduce stress and anxiety. Whether through listening to calming music, practicing breathing techniques and meditation, or participating in guided sessions, music can play a key role in your emotional and mental well-being, and that of your baby , during pregnancy. If you are pregnant and looking for ways to relax and connect with your baby, don't hesitate to explore the many possibilities that music therapy offers.



To find out more, go to the section “Why consult a music therapist?”




Sources:


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