In Thailand, Thai Traditional Midwifery treatment and care (Moh Tum Yae) comprises of knowledge of holistic healthcare and the wisdom handed down by Thai ancestors.
The traditional knowledge has been preserved by generations past, and its goal is taking care of women and their babies in the period of pregnancy and in the afterbirth or postpartum period.
The base principles applied in the pregnancy period are an adequate dietary care and Thai massage application (the latter to decrease pain and fatigue during pregnancy). The overall goal here is to prevent complications during labor and of course to promote a successful and comfortable pregnancy period.
Another purpose of Thai traditional midwifery is to encourage that pregnant women give birth at home and to supply women with practical, psychological and spiritual knowledge for themselves and their baby’s new life.
After childbirth, a set of Thai wisdom knowledge is applied to and for mothers, like for instance Heat Therapy (Yu Fai) and Thai massage, with the goal to keep the newborn child and the mother healthy. Some benefits of heat therapy include eliminating lochia (vaginal discharge after giving birth), lessen pain during sexual intercourse, normalizing the abdominal area and increase immunity.
The Thai Traditional Midwives practice itself is under threat to disappear from Thai society, but the knowledge and wisdom is still prevalent in contemporary times and is often continued by female family relatives. Traditional Midwifery in Thailand is heavily influenced by beliefs and applications connected to Buddhism, Brahmanism, Spirits and Animism.
Fortunately, preservation of Thai Traditional Midwifery knowledge and practice has been established on governmental educational level, and today a number of colleges and universities (and also some private training centers) offer adequate and thorough Traditional Midwifery courses and studies. Most of these Midwifery programs take 1 year of studies and are often (but not always) part of a more elaborate 4-year undergraduate bachelor study of Traditional Thai Medicine.
The Thai Traditional midwifery studies today comprise of training, meaning, scopes and importance of practice of traditional midwifery, that is—giving care during normal pregnancy, during pre-natal life of the baby, handling complications in pregnancy, care of the baby and infant, and post-partum care for mother and child using both Thai traditional and advanced (contemporary) medicine.
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