Not many people have heard about haptonomy – sometimes called the art of the emotional or affective touch.

It’s a wonderful method to communicate with your baby, and a great way of starting that bond between the two of you. Besides, it’s a wonderful way to imply the father as well.

In the following article, we’ll answer all your questions about haptonomy, so don’t miss the following lines! 


What is haptonomy?

Haptonomy is a way of communicating with your child though affective touch. It consists in stroking and touching your belly in a certain way so you can communicate with him. Experts in haptonomy claim that this is very useful to transmit your love to your baby, and besides, it completely includes the other parent in it. If your partner was feeling left out, haptonomy is a wonderful way of solving the issue.


How does it work?

Haptonomy is a process. As you learn how to touch your belly, something that your partner can do as well, you will feel the different reactions of your baby-to-be. Your haptonomy trainer will tell you what gestures to make so you communicate with your baby. Then, both you and your partner can reproduce the gestures and invite him or her to respond. You can accompany the gentle strokes with words, although the baby will only hear murmurs.

Haptonomy is developed in several different sessions, where you will progressively learn new movements and postures.


What are the benefits of haptonomy?

Haptonomy helps both parents and the child to develop their bond before the baby is born. Besides, it can help future parents cope with difficulties during pregnancy, like, for instance, if they have been announced their baby comes with a disability. Haptonomy can help improve the break of confidence experienced by the parents and help them reconnect with their baby. It can also help with multiple pregnancies.


What are its disadvantages?

Unfortunately, not everything regarding haptonomy is good – too beautiful to be true! There are some disadvantages that you need to consider before deciding on mastering the art of touch:

  • It is incompatible with other forms of preparation for delivery, such as yoga, breathing control or visualisation, among others. However, haptonomy includes preparation for birth too – but you will still need to consider what’s the best option for you.

  • The sessions are always individual, so you will need to ask for the costs before. Besides, you will need to do several sessions in order to learn properly.


When can I do it? 

It is recommended that you start with haptonomy as soon as you can if you are interested in learning but the latest moment where it would be possible is in the 28th week of pregnancy.

You can also use haptonomy during birth, since it can help the future mother be calmer during contractions – and the future father can help her do it! Besides, the movements of the hands can encourage the baby to go down the uterus and to change position if needed. Of course, you will need to count with the help and assistance of your midwife.


And postnatal haptonomy?

So why would you use haptonomy to communicate with the baby if he has already been born? Touching your baby is also considered haptonomy, since you can use similar gestures to those you used when he was in the womb – your midwife or haptonomy trainer will teach you how to do it. 

You can even do some more sessions so you can both learn new movements and ways of soothing your baby as he grows.


So, are you interested in learning something more about haptonomy? Don’t hesitate to ask your midwife for more information. She will be able to refer you to a specialist.