Trauma Prevention and Support

For Laboring People With Hidden Or Existing PTSD

This informative session covers the normal and altered neurological function of the attachment and defense systems in the laboring person’s brain; research on how pre-existing PTSD alters social behaviors and labor coping; and actions and interventions that can be taken by medical careproviders and labor support team members to prevent further trauma of the vulnerable laboring person and positive labor progress.

  1. Outline the oxytocin release process when the attachment system is activated in the laboring person.
  2. Explain the defense system for the release of adrenal hormones during perceived threatening events.
  3. Label six common actions taken by medical care providers that are often perceived as threatening by a laboring person with previous trauma experience.
  4. List six observable behaviors in the laboring patient whose defense system is being activated during labor.
  5. List three low effort and three moderate effort strategies careproviders can implement to prevent activation of the defense system in the previously traumatized patient’s brain.
  6. List five strategies that can be performed by doulas or others providing continuous labor support to the laboring person to counter stimuli perceived as threatening by the laboring person’s brain.

Length: 90 minutes conference session; a 75 minute module can be integrated into Adding To Your Labor Support Toolbox

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