The word tocophobia means fear of childbirth and it can be a very real and challenging problem when you want to add to your family. The causes are complex and range from problems in a previous pregnancy and birth or previous trauma.

If you are scared about giving birth  or about pregnancy itself  then it’s best to discuss your fears with someone you trust to understand more about how you feel. There are also specialist midwives available to talk you through your options and help you throughout your pregnancy. Talk to your community midwife if you’d like to be referred to someone who is trained in working with people who have these concerns and fears.

Many women can overcome their fears and manage to have a healing birth experience, with the right support from friends, family and healthcare professionals. Others might have a more challenging time in tackling their anxieties and find that they need extra support from healthcare professionals in working out how to manage their concerns.