BirthVR is a new development in the area of pain relief during childbirth. Recent scientific research conducted by doctors here in Holland, show that the VR gives excellent results.
BirthVR is a way to reduce fear and pain without the use of medication. Under the guidance of a midwife or a gynaecologist, the app can be used at home as well as in the hospital. At the moment the use of the VR vizier is connected to the KNOV research unit. (KNOV – Royal Dutch Organisation of Midwives)
Many women begin their delivery under the guidance of their midwife, at home or in the hospital.
If there is a need to use medication during the delivery, the patient will always be required to go to the hospital even if there are no obvious complications. That is the main reason why expectant mothers are moved from the 1st to the 2nd line of care.
But because of the increasing use of pain relief medication during delivery, many women reflect back on their experience with dissatisfaction. One important unanimous agreed factor is that ‘women want to remain in control about their use of pain relief. An epidural is not always possible or practical. The signal to use pain relief is sometimes given too late to be properly effective. It may occur that if the delivery comes very quickly, you could need an anaesthetist, and there might be a delay until one becomes available. With BirthVR we don’t have these problems. Women can decide for themselves whether they would want to use the vizier, and for how long.
Keeping the control in your own hands.
The app with the VR-vizier works via a link. When using the VR, a women experiences a comfortable diversion from the pain, and this helps her to relax. She becomes calmer. The VR is already in use in many other places where medical care is given. It has proved to be an effective way of reducing certain signals to the brain, therefore reducing fear and pain. Even when the pain is still present, its effect is reduced.
The BirthVR app offers 2 options.
In the menu, women can choose between ‘I am pregnant’ or ‘I am in labour’. In the section ‘I am pregnant’ there are different meditation and breathing exercises suggested, developed especially for pregnant women. Scientific research has shown that the effect of meditation is impressive. The meditation affects that part of the brain that experiences positivity and happiness. The part that is connected to stress and unrest is therefore reduced.
You can create that experience in the brain, but it does take some exercise to achieve it. Using this method of meditation and breathing exercises during the delivery helps to increase your focus and concentration. We think that practising/preparing with the BirthVR really does help. Many women relax more quickly. in our Practice, we provide all manners of relaxation exercises for expectant mothers.
Special for the women giving birth.
Rest is essential. We know that relaxation helps with dilation. It also gives the confidence to cope with the contractions. The more relaxed a woman is, the quicker the delivery progresses. BirthVR works as a sort of Coach. That support provides a positive effect to the outcome of the delivery. That combined with other methods of pain relief, has proved to be effective. The effect of the BirthVR continues even after the vizier is removed.
Also, the experience the app provides is directly focused on the woman giving birth. The app has been designed with the collaboration of different patients. Images and sound have been chosen on the basis of the feedback from women who have already used it. Experiences change during a delivery because one’s personal needs and experiences change. The BirthVR is completely in tune with all the different phases. This makes the big difference compared to other forms of fear and pain relief.
Significantly less pain.
The first experiments show that the level of pain decreased by 2 points on a scale of 0 (no pain) to 10 (heavy pain). That is a significant result. Similar results have been found elsewhere. Any delivery comes naturally with prolonged acute pain making it a complicated process.
Available for everyone.
This is a more accessible method of pain relief… it starts up immediately, is quickly deactivated, and has no side effects. And it is always available, whether your delivery is at home or in the hospital. We hope that the epidural / or the use of medicine, will be less often needed in the future. This should help reduce complications and the costs.
This new development fits well within the future care that we can provide for you.