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A word from Georgie Jhet – Doula

Hi everyone, I’m Georgie Jhet – a Zetland-based Doula, Childbirth Educator, Placenta Encapsulator, Sacred Pregnancy and Postpartum facilitator, NLP Practitioner and currently studying Clinical Hypnosis and Strategic Psychotherapy.

The last seven years have seen the awakening of a different life path, from having to terminate a pregnancy at 23 weeks due to fetal abnormalities and giving birth to a stillborn son we named Juniper, I then ditched my corporate life (IT, Telco & Print Industries) and studied at The Australian Doula College as a Doula and Childbirth Educator.

When my son was born, there was no one in the delivery room but my husband and I – I was totally out of my body after a shot of pethidine so didn’t see him enter the world and my husband didn’t know whether he could hold him or not. I then decided pretty quickly that I didn’t want anyone to experience birth of any kind without someone they could trust implicitly. That birth experience was highly medicalised so with my second pregnancy we chose a homebirth. There were a lot of factors why our daughter wasn’t born in the birth pool but even though we transferred to the hospital, I still found the experience an empowering one as I was more in control and could decide which options to take along the way.

What is a doula?

A doula is a person who is hired by a pregnant woman to support her (and her partner) in the last weeks of pregnancy, labour, birth & postpartum. A doula provides emotional and physical support in addition to evidence-based information and does not provide any medical care.

Why might you choose to use a doula?

When birthing units are really busy, many times the midwife is only in the room now and then doing checks and then leaves the Mum or couple to their own devices. A Doula ensures that both Mum and partner are supported. Many times, the presence of a Doula is very comforting for the partner especially as they don’t have to feel the pressure to be a mini-midwife and know all there is about birthing, comfort measures, interventions etc – I have seen partners really be able to enjoy the experience of loving on the Mum and the joy when they meet their baby for the first time.

A doula can be the eyes and ears in the delivery room – someone they have built a relationship with who they trust will have their back so to speak. Sometimes the birth space can enforce women to choose interventions merely due to timeframes – some caregivers like to rush labour and birth so they can move onto the next woman. In the meetings before labour starts, the Doula will go through information about the medical model of care, interventions and pain relief options so that the first time the labouring Mum and her partner are propositioned in the birthing space, they would have enough information to provide informed consent.

What are some common birth fears that you see and can help ladies with?

Pain and Tearing would have to be the most common….along with the use of unnecessary interventions possibly leading to a caesarean. During the first pre-birth meeting, I cover off ways of alleviating some of these fears based on my experience of supporting over 55 births.

Hypnosis can really help allay these fears also hence why I am studying this at the present time.

What is placenta encapsulation and why do it?

Placenta encapsulation is the process of dehydrating the placenta before grinding into powder and placing into capsules. This would be the most common of the remedies I provide my clients. I also make smoothies, mother essence, tinctures and cord keepsakes.

Women have reported that it may:

Prevent the baby blues and postnatal depression

Encourage a quick and healthy milk supply

Significantly reduce post-birth bleeding

Provide a burst of energy and positive mood from stabilising hormones

Help them to feel calmer and more able to bond with their baby

What services do you offer?

In addition to Doula and Placenta Services, I also provide Sacred Pregnancy and Birth Journey circles for pregnant women and their partners in the last months of pregnancy. These circles are so different to the typical birth preparation classes. Each week we focus on a different topic – for the pregnancy circles, the Mums get to explore issues pertaining to becoming a Mum; relationship issues, food and body image, expectations and connection, fears and forgiveness to name a few and they find ways to free themselves from their past hurts, take a look at their own upbringing and make a plan for what they would like to instil in their own families moving forward.

For the couples ‘Birth Journey’ class we focus on birth planning, connection exercises, surrendering to the power of labour, fear release, comfort measures such as rebozo, connection to baby, rite of passage and ways of preparing for postpartum.

I have a passion for supporting newborn mothers in the postpartum period too by holding a beautiful ceremony that includes honouring the new Mum, warming her through a herbal bath, a sealing ceremony – aka the ‘Closing of the Bones’ – which allows her body and mind to come back into balance and belly binding to regain strength and stability to the abdominal muscles and pelvis. This can be done one on one or turned into a true ceremony with her closest friends (such a beautiful way to be honoured).

This year, I have also become an NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) Practitioner and am also studying currently to become a Clinical Hypnotherapist and Strategic Psychotherapist and believe that these skills will greatly help my birthing and postpartum clients with any fears or limiting beliefs they have that can affect their pregnancy and birthing experience as well as their bond with their babies, partners and relationships after baby is earth side.

If you would like to have a chat or meet in person to discuss your pregnancy, birthing and postpartum, feel free to contact me via my website – http://www.treeoflifebirthandbeyond.com.au or by calling me on 0403 777 277.

Welcome

Pain and discomfort during pregnancy is common, in fact, half of you will experience  pregnancy related pelvic girdle pain, quite apart from pain in the rest of your spine, neck and arms. Our aim is to give you an understanding of what changes are happening to your pregnant body, why they may be causing you pain and discomfort, what can be done to help alleviate the pain, and allow you to enjoy your pregnancy.

Simply by removing myofascial strain and working with your body’s natural healing systems, we find our pregnant patients are able to achieve more comfortable and enjoyable pregnancies. Pain and discomfort during pregnancy is just one more thing you don’t need to think about.

As your belly grows, your muscles and ligaments have to work a lot harder just to maintain upright posture. Your ligaments relax so that your pelvis is more supple for birthing your baby, but this means that your joints become more flexible and less stable, and often your body will compensate by guarding your muscles. With all this extra strain on the body, we find it takes less load to cause pain and discomfort. This can be frustrating when seemingly “normal” tasks can start to cause us pain.

So why is movement and balance so important during pregnancy?

Movement is Life. It is what allows all of your systems of your body – cardiac, urogenital, lymphatic, circulatory, spinal, respiratory, neurological- to function at their best. The body is a self-healing, self-regulating system, and it intrinsically ‘knows’ how to sustain and heal, just as it ‘knows’ how to grow a baby. However when the mechanics of your body are not moving effectively or efficiently, your body’s natural drainage system (your venous and lymphathic system) won’t be working as efficiently. This can lead to congestion , swelling, and inflammation stagnation in your tissues – this can lead to pain and discomfort.

Also, how you are moving or not moving will govern how well it works. When there is strain (an area that is contracted or spasmed and working harder than it should be) you will not be moving and functioning as best you can.

So what causes us to be unbalanced? Many things can contribute – our inherent asymmetry, old injuries leading to compensatory patterns, how we move or don’t move during the day, our nutrition, how we unconsciously load and hold our bodies. Add onto this the increased blood volume of pregnancy, the extra strain of increased weight, the forward shift in your centre of gravity, the spinal curves increasing and hormonal changes.

And what do we as chiropractors and osteopaths do? We aim to restore balance to your body by addressing those non optimal strain patterns, to encourage movement where you need it, and educate you on how you can move and rest to reduce strain, improve function of your body. The whole point being if you are moving well, with ease, your body can function at its best, you will have less pain and discomfort.

Common pregnancy complaints that we can help with include pelvic girdle pain, lower back pain, sciatic pain, pubic symphysis dysfunction, lymphedema, carpal tunnel syndrome, headaches, neck and back pain, jaw pain, rib pain, ligament pain, diastasis recti and post partum pelvic girdle pain, aberrant lie of the baby, and more. After the birth we can help with back and rib pain, restore the correct alignment of the pelvis and importantly, reduce the spasm in the pelvic floor. We help you get sleep when you need it.

Please head on over to our Instagram page @balancedbumps and follow us on Facebook for videos and tips on how to move, rest and sit during pregnancy, as well as information about different conditions we see during pregnancy, and what can be done to help. We are sure that in time, the information we share here will be a valuable and empowering resource for pregnant women.