Antenatal Birth Preparation Classes and Courses
Birth Preparation Classes or Antenatal Classes?
Here we try to answer some of the questions that many parents-to-be may have been thinking about before they book a place on a set of classes.
What are the classes about exactly? Is there any difference between the two?
What will I learn? Will it be useful to go or will I be bored? Will it help me in labour? Will my partner enjoy it or will he feel “left out”?
Birth Preparation and Antenatal Classes are just different names for the same kind of class or session.
Birth Preparation Classes
Depending on where you live, you will be offered classes by the NHS which may be held at your local hospital or at a venue in the community. They can vary enormously in format, from a series of classes to one-day workshops.
In the private arena, you can choose to attend courses run by the National Childbirth Trust (NCT) or a variety of courses and classes run by Independent Midwives.
The aim of birth preparation classes is not only for parents to be more informed of how the body works in pregnancy and birth and their choices for care but also to give the women and her partner skills to manage labour and the transition to parenthood in the best possible way.
How the classes are run can vary enormously, ranging from mediocre to very informative and empowering.
It is a fact that nationwide there are rising rates of intervention and caesarian section, coupled with a reduction in women’s confidence in their abilities to birth well and a deep fear of the birth process.
So how can good birth preparation classes help reduce this risk or at least help you to have the best birth possible, whatever the circumstances?
Understanding how fear leads to tension which leads to pain which leads to fear…. is one of the keys. Once you have understood this, you will then learn many ways to break this cycle or even how to prevent it happening in the first place
Birth preparation classes run by independent midwives will have at ,most 6 couples taking part and they also offer one-to-one teaching sessions in couple’s own homes…
Natal Hypnotherapy Birth Preparation Classes
“I felt calm and reassured that I could go through labour with ease as I practiced breathing techniques/relaxing. I felt no need for any pain relief at all. I actually started to look forward to each contraction knowing my baby will see me soon”
In Dorset there are 2-day Natal Hypnotherapy courses run by an independent midwife in small groups of six couples at most or you can choose private sessions.
You will learn how to go into deep relaxation (you are not “being hypnotized” as you always remain in control). It is more about learning to go deeply relaxed and “turn off” your rational thinking brain and allowing your body to give birth as it naturally knows how to, without you having to instruct it!
You will learn how to overcome fears, reduce pain, feel more confident and in control, reduce your chance of needing intervention and learn how the body works in labour as well as effective breathing and relaxation techniques.
Partners will learn how to effectively help you, through massage and relaxation techniques and be prepared and confident for the birth and parenthood.
These are offered by by independent midwives and by some hospitals.
A thoroughly enjoyable half-day interactive workshop will familiarize you with the concept of waterbirth. A chance to ask lots of questions, discuss your hopes and fears and learn about the wonder of waterbirth from the experts. You will also have the opportunity to see a birth pool and even sit in one if you wish, (empty, of course!) just to see how it might actually feel for you.