​​​​​Association for Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health, APPPAH


Journal of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health, JOPPPAH

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PPNE - APPPAH Classwomb™ is pleased to offer its Pre-Natal and Peri-Natal Educator (PPNE) Certificate Program in a newly improved version of the www.birthpsychology.com classroom. Follow the link to discover the new PPNE Certificate Program here. Learn more about the Dynamic Education Department here.

Visit APPPAH's ClassWomb. You can find out more about our 11 module educational program clicking here, and wonderful stories about our Mentors, Students, Graduates, and more in our Classwomb Newsletter.  Visit our classroom at http://classroom.birthpsychology.com and try our free offerings.

​PPNE Somatics Monthly Lecture. PPNE Somatics is a monthly lecture for anyone who wants to study the somatics, or felt sense, of PPNE. This was recorded in 2016.  The NEW Somatics course is part of our Monday LIVE!.

The Conscious Baby Project. APPPAH is working on new curriculum for parents, lay persons and spiritual seekers.  Are you interested in helping APPPAH and our educational efforts?  Join us.  Email the Director of Education today at Educate@birthpsychology.com


​APPPAH's Bi-Annual International Congress

APPPAH's Regional Conference

Monday LIVE! Lecture Series with Birth Psychology Leaders and Pioneers


What Is Our Nonprofit Mission?

Why Do We Need Birth Psychology Education?

Our Association for Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health, APPPAH, was born in the mind of Thomas R. Verny. Before this, Thomas had earned a doctorate in medicine, a specialty in psychology, and was distinguishing himself as a teacher and author. He later explains what we might call our "conception" in the foreword to The Secret Life of the Unborn Child (1981, p. 11).

The Secret Life of the Unborn Child (1981) opened doors and proved to be the forerunner of the activities to follow. The book became an extraordinary instrument educating the world about prenatal and perinatal psychology, an emerging field that was neglected in academic psychology. The book became an international best seller, ultimately translated into more than 25 languages, with a quarter million books sold in Japanese alone.

The first congress was scheduled for July 1983 in Toronto with Thomas as the Chair. Founding board members were Dr. Verny, David Chamberlain, Sandra Collier, Marcia Penner, and attorney Paul Dineen. The objectives of the Association were to further understand the psychology of pregnancy and birth and the ways in which pregnant mothers influence the unborn; to study the effects of medical intervention on mothers and babies; to explore remedial techniques to counteract prenatal and perinatal traumas; to enhance the mental and physical health of mothers and fathers and their babies; to publish and distribute information; and to organize educational meetings for the purpose of exploring the above issues. Professionals and non-professionals were invited to meet in an atmosphere of openness and freedom from dogma.

More About APPPAH

The Association for Pre- and Perinatal Psychology and Health focuses attention on the life-changing discoveries being made in the first period of human development from preparation for pregnancy through the postpartum period and establishment of breastfeeding.

We find that prenatal and perinatal experiences have a profound impact on the subsequent quality of health and human behavior; we see that life is a continuum which starts before conception, not after birth. During this formative period, parents and babies are not isolated from each other but fundamentally interconnected. A loving prenatal and perinatal experience inspires such things as bonding and sensitivity to others which have long-term consequences for both individual relationships and for society. Ultimately, womb ecology reveals itself in world ecology as the seeds of peace or violence are sown by parents, their models, teachers, and caregivers during pregnancy and birth.

APPPAH task forces publish The APPPAH Newsletter and the Journal of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health, hold regional and international conferences, promote research, serve the public with valuable directories and resources, work to enhance the pregnancy experience and prevent birth trauma. APPPAH members have been at the forefront in recognizing the multiple traumas of modern pregnancy and birth and developing practical therapeutic methods to deal with them.

Annual Conferences

Since the first International Congress on Pre- and Perinatal Psychology held in Toronto in 1983, biennial congresses have been a major activity of the Association. Congresses were held in San Diego (1985), San Francisco (1987), Amherst (1989), Atlanta (1991), Washington D.C. (1993), San Francisco (1995, 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003), San Diego (2005), Los Angeles (2007), Pacific Grove, CA/Asilomar Conference Center (2009, 2010, 2013), San Francisco (2011, 2012), Pacific Grove, CA/Asilomar Conference Center (2013) and Berkeley, CA (2015), Seattle, WA (2016), San Diego, CA (2017), Denver, CA (2018), Denver CA (2019). Recordings of all congresses from 1983 to the present are indexed, searchable by keywords, and available on the APPPAH website www.birthpsychology.com.


The original quarterly, Pre- & Perinatal Psychology Journal, was founded and edited by Thomas Verny, M.D. in the spring of 1985. Beginning with volume 12(1) fall 1997 the title was changed to Journal of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health reflecting the Association's change of name. The Association owns and publishes the Journal and seeks leading-edge articles in the field of prenatal and perinatal psychology and health. The Editor welcomes original papers on the psychological aspects of very early parenting, pregnancy, prenatal bonding and communication, childbirth, psychological factors in birth complications, birth losses and grief, adoption, the primal origins of health, birth and violence, the healing of birth trauma, and contrasting psychological experiences of birth in other cultures. The Journal may be purchased by individuals, libraries and other institutions by annual subscription from the APPPAH office. Since fall 2009, APPPAH has offered electronic editions of the Journal. To propose or to submit an article please contact the journal.editor@birthpsychology.com.

On a quarterly schedule, the Association publishes The APPPAH Newsletter edited by Barbara Rivera.  Special features include cover stories, "Media Watch", reviews of books, videos, and movies, advance notices of our regional and international conferences, announcements of activities of our Partners, and "Vision Into Action: Passion Into Policy." Printed copies are mailed to members but any interested person can access the electronic edition of the Newsletter on the Association website by going to www.birthpsychology.com/newsletters. Please send news tips and suggestions to us at the main APPPAH administrative office in Lakewood, CO (see below).

Books & Videos in Birth Psychology is periodically updated and published on the website. This selected list is limited to books published in the last twenty five years and kept in print. An attempt is made to identify the dozen most influential books judged by their large circulation, multiple editions, and foreign translations.

The APPPAH Website, Birthpsychology.com was founded in 1996 by David B. Chamberlain, Editor, and Edward Goldberg, Webmaster. The number of persons visiting the website has steadily increased so that by 2015 there are over 15,000 unique visitors each month from over 100 countries. The purpose of the website is to share with the world the life-changing discoveries being made in the growing field of prenatal and perinatal psychology. The site is a unique and compact treasury of information about all activities of the Association. The website is a gift from the members of the Association for Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health. Since its founding, we have added www.theconsciousbaby.com, an electronic newspaper for parents publishes monthly. The organization’s strategic plan focuses on sharing what we have learned with Practitioners, Parents, and Places of Birth to optimize outcomes through awareness of very early parenting, pregnancy, prenatal bonding and communication, and childbirth experiences. We have a new Classwomb™ that has our PPNE course, new Toolkits, and On-Demand courses, http://www.birth-psychology-classwomb.teachable.com.


APPPAH is a California public-benefit educational corporation, under Section 501(c)(3) of the revenue code and is exempt from state and federal taxes. The directors of the Association are elected by vote of the membership. Directors then elect a President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer. Directors hold office for three years and may be re-elected to one additional three-year term. 

Contact Us:
2010 West Avenue K, #1042
Lancaster, CA  93536-5229

TEL: 720-490-5612


The pre- and perinatal period includes the time before conception, pregnancy, birth and the first year of life.  Many aspects of health come into play.  Recent findings in cell biology, neuroscience and epigenetics emphasize that we are influenced by our ancestors'' experiences, our mother's experience when we were in utero, and our birth, bonding and attachment with our caregivers.  These early and ancestral experiences can influence our genetic code and create implicit memories that in turn, influence our perceptions and experiences today.  

APPPAH has developed an educational program that supports professionals in many different fields with 11 modules that represent our competencies.  These include epigenetics, neuroscience, psychological theories from our unique perspective, bonding, how the womb is a learning environment, the importance of the baby's experiences of pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding, a long ranging implications of this early period.

Our educational program seeks to improve human health from the very start.  Join our community!

And thank you for participating in Birth Psychology Month this March 2019!

APPPAH educates professionals and the public, worldwide, that a baby’s experience of conception, pregnancy, and birth creates lifelong consequences for individuals, families, and society. As a result of scientific discoveries and continually emerging evidence, we know babies are conscious and sentient beings. We accomplish our mission by

- Creating conferences, workshops, and other educational opportunities

- Publishing a peer-reviewed Journal, Newsletter, and several Directories

- Sharing a website containing APPPAH archives, a specialized bookstore, and key papers and topics in birth psychology

- Promoting research

- Partnering with local, regional, national, and international groups with similar interests, and

- Advocating for a new era of pregnancy and birth honoring the consciousness of babies and           parents, and the prevention of prenatal and perinatal trauma.

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