Four Reasons to Take a (Great) Childbirth Class

Taking a childbirth preparation class is not the most exciting part of pregnancy. If you have a spare evening or weekend to consider a course, you may be more tempted to relax on your sofa or work on your registry than think about how a baby is going to pass through the vaginal canal. You doctor may have even told you not to take a class, because “they’ll take care of you” or you are planning on getting an epidural. 

Whether you’re birthing with an OB or a midwife, ready for drugs now or are hoping to go without - here are the four most important reasons to register for a class.

  1. We do some serious myth busting. Some, or all, of what you know about labor and delivery is likely wrong. Understanding the physiological process behind childbirth and the common procedures of medical providers is key to having a safe and satisfying delivery! For example:

      • Go to the hospital right when your water breaks? Probably not! 

      • Lie down and sleep once you get an epidural? You lose gravity’s assist.

      • Once your 10cm dilated, “PUSH!” Waiting might prevent tearing! 

  2. We teach to your partner.  Whether or not your second half is on board, they likely know even less than you about this process. We will give your partner a list of responsibilities and techniques so they can stay calm and present for you! And, they’ll come away being able to give a decent back rub!

  3. We talk about postpartum care. Pelvic health and postpartum mood and anxiety disorders are just coming into popular conversation but are not discussed nearly enough. Your days, weeks, and months post-birth are a time of great transition, physically and emotionally. You need information in order to plan and prepare. You also, ideally want to take a course that includes breastfeeding and newborn care. Because while you will “figure it out” you can set yourself up for success! 

  4. We build community. While you may not need more friends, there is something special about sitting in a room with others who are also expecting their first baby. You will learn from their questions and lend support to each other. 

Good childbirth preparation classes should walk you through what to expect and how to optimize unmedicated deliveries as well as what to expect and how to optimize the use of an epidural. They will help you formulate a plan for successfully communicating with nurses and doctors in the heat of the moment and give you mindfulness strategies and massage techniques that are useful far beyond your labor-day.