What is Birth Trauma ?

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Birth Trauma is a 'switched on' trauma (flight/fight/freeze) response to the events of pregnancy and birth. Any one of the symptoms listed can cause serious distress.

The trauma response is a normal and healthy response to a perceived threat. If it is left 'switched on,' managing these types of symptoms can be quite exhausting. Women will often say ‘I put my memories away’ but still feel depleted in emotional energy. Symptoms of birth truma are not easily accessible to logical thinking which also can be perplexing. Saying ‘I will make myself better’ doesn’t seem to work.

Women seeking medical assistance may be diagnosed with an anxiety disorder or postnatal depression and, until recently, men have been unlikely to be diagnosed at all, since many have not felt they can or should come forward to seek help.

We believe that even one, or a combination of the following symptoms of trauma can be significant. It may be beneficial to receive this type of counselling to resolve or reduce the symptoms you experience.

Trauma symptoms (this list is not exhaustive)

Insomnia; Waking and feeling edgy; Nightmares; Intrusive flashbacks; Feelings of sadness or anger; Reliving events over and over; Panic symptoms or panic attack; Confusion and poor memory; Hyper anxiety about baby; Poor emotional connection with baby; Emotions that you normally don’t feel (sadness, depression, enormous guilt or a sense of helplessness). 

Our Solution

We offer therepy to Women, Men and Couples. In Afterthoughts NI you will be seen by a therapist who is trained to work in the Afterthoughts model of care. We assess your needs and our capacity to help. We work with our clients to plan care which reflects a pathway designed to reduce or eliminate trauma symptoms. We provide a therapeutic and educational service. We equip you with tools to help manage your needs in the future and will often work with underlying issues. We aim to complete all of your care within 4 sessions with an option for further counselling if required.  


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