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Is social media driving pregnancy phobia

IANS  |  London 

Horror stories of shared by new mothers on and platforms like could be driving the rise in -- a pathological terror of and -- leading to more C-section requests and abortions, a media report said.

"You just have to and you're met with a tsunami of horror stories," Health quoted Catriona Jones, a at the as saying.

If you go to any online forums, "there are women telling their stories of childbirth - 'Oh, it was terrible', 'it was a bloodbath', 'this and that happened'. I think that can be quite frightening for women to engage with and read about," she added.

is a mental condition defined as a severe fear or dread of childbirth. It affects around 14 per cent of women, and can be serious enough to lead to requests for caesarean sections, and abortions, reported.

According to of the University of Liverpool, that was seriously under-researched and there was little literature on the condition.

"(Stories) shared in safe environments can be quite healing and informative but some women are predisposed to developing a phobia due to stories taken out of context or experiences that are graphic," she noted.

Kenny added that the main causes of the condition varied depending on whether you were pregnant with your first or second child.

"Some women develop it due to an adverse birth experience but for others the main cause can be a history of childhood or adult sexual assault or abuse. It can also be due to previous exposure to a story or something they have seen on TV or social media," she explained.

Treatment for tokophobia includes cognitive behaviour therapy, one-to-one educational sessions with midwives, and "graded exposure", a process that involves having access to labour rooms or operating theatres in a gradual and non-threatening way.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, September 16 2018. 19:06 IST