The silent birth is, as the name suggests, creating an environment that is as calm and quiet as possible for the birthing mother and child as may be possible.
While all sounds are not debarred, it is words that are precluded from the birthing environment.
So all the cheery tale swapping and encouraging calls of ‘Push -Push’ that are de rigueur for the birthing process are a no-no for a silent birth.
L Ron Hubbard’s church of scientology advocates silent birth because “any words spoken are recorded in the reactive mind and can have an aberrative effect on the mother and the child.”
Scientology practitioners believe that a part of the mind which is termed as the reactive mind reacts negatively to words spoken during the birthing process since words spoken during traumatic times are recorded within this reactive mind.
Then these are capable of dictating thoughts, emotions and psychosomatic ills not under his control it is thought.
As to what takes place during a silent birth, there are no actual or prescribed norms or procedures, but there is the conscious effort to exclude words from the proceedings which would typically involve the birthing mother, midwife and/or doctor.
The people present can work out how best to communicate without words. Normal sounds of the birthing process such as grunts are not barred, but words are to be cut out of the process as far as possible.
There is the charge that Scientology tenets prohibit speaking to the infant for a week after birth, however this has been countered by the FAQ page of the official site of Silent birth as ‘complete fabrication’.
Medical practitioners also assert that there is nothing to support the claim of scientology or silent birth proponents that indicated that silent birth was beneficial and that there was no medical evidence that supported such a claim.
“There’s absolutely no scientific evidence that taking [noise] away at the time of delivery will have any effect on outcome for the baby or mother,” according to one doctor.
There is also the indignant assertion by some medical practitioners that L Ron Hubbard had not attended medical school to make such a claim.
Whatever the proponent or opponents claim, having a calm and quiet atmosphere for a baby and mother is more likely to be beneficial to a mother who is undergoing the difficult and stressful process of birthing than actually detrimental.