One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The prevention of disease or promotion of health and well-being by psychological means; especially a method of alleviating pain in labour by psychological training which includes techniques of relaxation and distraction.
Early 20th century. From psycho- + prophylaxis. In specific sense after Russian psixoprofilaktika; compare also psychoprophylaxy, which is first attested slightly earlier in the specifically sense.
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