Prenatal Classes that Suit You and Your Family
It’s never too early to start thinking about prenatal classes. Many fill up really quickly, so it’s a good idea to decide on a class and sign up early in your pregnancy. But which style of classes should you choose?
When I was pregnant with my first child, I got so much conflicting advice about which method was “the best” and it was really confusing. The bottom line is that what’s best is simply what’s best for you.
In this post, we go through the philosophies and practices of each of the main types of prenatal education classes so you can make a decision that suits you and your family.
The Benefits of Prenatal Classes:
- Taking a childbirth preparation class helps you build your confidence in your ability to give birth.
- You meet people going through the same thing as you and can discuss your questions and fears with peers as well as experts.
- Prenatal classes for couples ensure that your partner knows how to support you throughout your pregnancy and delivery.
- You will learn about pain relief options, birthing methods and how to create a birth plan that works for you.
- Prenatal classes teach breathing techniques, massage and relaxation exercises, to help you through your labor.
Types of Prenatal Classes:
Prenatal Lamaze classes are among the most popular birthing classes and focus mainly on controlled breathing through labor and delivery. Lamaze breathing classes will offer you:
- How to do Lamaze breathing.
- Massage techniques.
- Comfortable birth positions.
- The role of the partner.
- Communication skills.
- Medical procedures.
The Bradley Method
The Bradley method of prenatal birthing is built around natural birth philosophies. It is generally a 12-week series of classes which focus on:
- Preparing for a drug-free labor and delivery.
- Reducing the risk of caesarean delivery.
- Birth rehearsals.
- Nutrition and exercise advice.
- Postpartum health and breastfeeding.
This is one of the newer types of prenatal classes and is becoming increasing popular. This method revolves around using hypnotherapy techniques to:
- Achieving a day-dream like state of relaxation during labor.
- Drug-free pain management.
- Birth partners.
Online Prenatal Classes
As well as attending physical classes, there are a number of websites, including our own, which offer in-depth prenatal classes online. The more knowledge you have, the better prepared you’ll be and prenatal online classes allow you to learn in your own time and to go more deeply into the topics which affect you. Our week by week guide to pregnancy is a great place to start if you want to follow what’s happening with your body and your baby each week of your pregnancy.
Prenatal Exercise Classes
Prenatal workout classes are an excellent way to keep your body fit and healthy throughout your pregnancy and to meet other mothers to be. Many gyms, community centers, and yoga and pilates studios offer specialized prenatal classes. Fit and healthy women find delivery much easier as their bodies are better prepared. They are great classes to take in addition to one (or more) of the birth education methods above.
Finding Prenatal Classes Near Me:
It pays to take a bit of expert advice when deciding the type of childbirth classes you’ll take (and you’ll also need to know what’s available in your local area!) Here are some ideas on where you can get advice:
- The local pregnancy center.
- Your Obstetrician.
- Your Midwife or Doula.
- Family and friends who have children.
Learn More about Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Beyond:
The book hasn’t completely gone out of fashion yet! There are many up to date pregnancy books with all the latest advice, research, and science on everything you need to know about pregnancy. We review the five most popular pregnancy books here.
You have 40 weeks to prepare for labor and birth. The more you understand about the process, the better prepared you’ll be. Check out our reviews of the five most trusted books on childbirth. Download to your kindle or order a hard copy, put your feet up, and learn all you can about this miraculous process.
Wondering what to expect in each week of your pregnancy? We cover fetal development, pregnancy symptoms, preparation checklists and much more in our week by week pregnancy calendar.
Worry and anxiety are a natural part of pregnancy. But which symptoms are normal and which are cause to call the doctor? To stop you second-guessing yourself, we run through symptoms that can pose a risk to you and your unborn baby.