University Hospital of Wales tries offering virtual reality therapy to women in early stage of labour

University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff has come up with an innovative pain management therapy to ease the pain of women in labour. The women are handed virtual reality headsets, through which experts want to examine if they can manage pain. On obtaining successful results, the trial will be rolled out across Wales.

On basis of reports of Hannah Lelii, a mother-to-be, who tested the kit ahead of the birth of her first child, she referred to the therapy as a ‘stimulator’.

Moreover, she said, “It’s genuinely 360 degrees, so when I turn, I’ve got the view that would be behind me or to the side of me. It helps to get me in a state of relaxation.”

Furthermore, she added that the therapy may not be for everyone, it perhaps may not be for every stage of labour, but it was certainly an alternative.

According to reports, the health board is likely to arrange a feedback session in order to judge the response of the new mothers-to-be, based on their trail of headsets.

According to Suzanne Hardacre, head of midwifery of Cardiff and Vale health board, she said the virtual reality therapy provides the organization body with an opportunity to try their hands on something different, as well as innovative; a practice which is not applied anywhere else.

“There’s a great opportunity particularly to use this with women in early labour, to try and help them with some breathing and relaxation and take them out of the moment,” she commented on the technology.

Hardacre also added that the new therapy could help women who had previously suffered traumatic birth experiences. The headsets were been given to women, who came for labour inductions and the kit was recommended during early stages of labour, when the women were believed to be more in control. Virtual reality is thus trying to make its way through the traditional practices which offer breathing, water, and relaxation as therapy practices during early labour.

Reports allege the technology has been created by Developers Rescape and they charge about £4,000 per headset each year. According to the co-founder of the company, Glenn Hapgood, he said the technology moved from its purpose of gaming arena to therapies.

“A hospital stay is never an enjoyable one. So even if you look at it from a therapy point of view, just taking people away from the uncomfortable environment they’re in – it’s a very easy solution to have,”he added.