2023 Author: Anita Thornton | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-11-27 18:44
It is also called “affective touch”: haptomy is in fact a technique that allows parents to come into contact with baby during pregnancy, thanks to touch.
The word haptonomy therefore comes from 2 Greek terms: hapsis, or haptein, which means touch, and nomos, which means the norm, the rule. The goal of emotional touch is simple: by applying our hands to our belly, we want to establish a first communication with baby, a communication that can give him a feeling of security and confidence. It's undeniable: emotional touch is growing in popularity. Promoting affective contact between the unborn child and its parents, more and more parents are lending themselves to haptonomy, which was first put into practice by the Dutch doctor Frans Veldman.
A matter of contact
How to practice haptonomy, exactly? It's simple: the parents place their hands on the woman's belly and exert light pressure on the pregnant woman's belly. The mother can indulge in it, of course, but also the father or other family members. Therefore, even if they are not carrying the child, these people who will be part of the baby's inner circle, like his brothers and sisters, havealso the incredible opportunity to enter into an interactive relationship with him.
We know that it is from the 4th month of pregnancy that the fetus is able to feel the caress and movements of the hands on the belly of its mother. In addition, he is then able to react to it: it is not uncommon for baby to move himself towards these caresses, snuggling up against the wall where his parent's hands are. But be careful: the caresses must be gentle. We want to invite baby to dance freely in the belly, not to trap him
A host of benefits
By promoting love and affection in this way, baby has, even before birth, the feeling of being important and loved, which could also help to strengthen the bond of attachment between him and his parents. This gentle contact therefore allows those who are not carrying a baby to still have a unique and privileged communication with the unborn child.
Studies are lacking and, unfortunately, we are not yet able to make an exhaustive list of all the benefits of haptonomy. That being said, it is believed that emotional touch would promote proper positioning of the fetus in the uterus. Haptonomy would also allow a more harmonious childbirth, both for the child and for the mother, who could see her pain slightly reduced. It should be noted that the father can learn certain gestures which will indeed be able to relieve the mother, during labor.childbirth.
A sense of confidence
But it is above all emotionally that affective touch has proven itself! The fact of enacting all this positive attention to the baby even before his birth would indeed contribute to inflating his feeling of security and, therefore, the transition between the world in utero and the outside world is better experienced. Consequently, we can hope that the child will have a better emotional balance.
Emotional touch allows the other parent to be involved in the pregnancy. In addition, haptonomy does not only secure baby: this technique also results in a rapprochement between the two parents. The mother feels secure, especially during childbirth, and the father has more the impression of having a role to play.
If everything seems simple, it should be noted that haptonomy is a very precise technique and that it is strongly encouraged to call on someone who has received training to show us the basics: the The problem is that affective touch is much more popular in Europe and, by the same token, training is also given on the other side of the Atlantic. But midwives and companions could still guide you, as well as some centers where they offer prenatal yoga classes for couples. If you are interested in the technique, visit the Association for affective preparation for birth website, where you can find resource people.
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