Posts tagged prenatal education
3 reasons to take your prenatal education class earlier
Top 3 Reasons to Take a Prenatal Class and Why You Should do it Before Your Third Trimester - Doula Tips - Doula Advice - Pregnancy Milestones.jpeg

You’ve decided that prenatal education is a “must have” for you… but when do you sign up?

Taking a prenatal education class is such an important step towards preparing for your birth. A good prenatal education class will help you explore the different options you have when it comes to your birthing space, your care providers, pain medications, and hands-on ways you can stay on top of your contractions. No matter how you are planning on giving birth, there are choices you will have to make along the way and knowledge is power.

25 weeks is the perfect time to take your class.

Because there is so much to learn, you want time on your side. Signing up for a prenatal education class around the midway point of your pregnancy means you will have time to process all the information that is presented to you and figure out what you want to fold into your vision of birth. It is never too late to sign up for class, but earlier is better!

prenatal education peterborough hello baby

3 reasons why taking your prenatal education class earlier is a GREAT idea!

  1. Time to research and plan.

    There are a TON of books, blogs, articles, and videos about birth out there. There are so many, in fact, that it can be hard to know where to start! When you take your prenatal education class around the “half way” mark of your pregnancy not only are you giving yourself time to read and explore, you are giving yourself some direction! Ask your prenatal education teacher for suggestions and dig in!

  2. Time to ask questions.

    If you think about it, you only see your midwives, doctor or OBGYN approximately 15 times throughout your pregnancy (unless any additional scans or checks are needed). Assuming you take your prenatal education class around week 25 that means you may only have 6 or 7 visits left to talk to your care provider, ask them questions, and work together towards a plan that includes your birth goals. The later you take your class, the less time you have to really dig into the details with your team! Trust us, you WILL walk out of class with new information and some really important questions!

  3. Time to practice.

    One of the best things about a good prenatal education class is the opportunity it gives you and a birth partner to learn and practice new skills that will be SO important in keeping you comfortable, calm and confident during your labour. The earlier you take your class, the more time you have to practice what you have learned and you know what they say, practice makes perfect! It has been shown that when you take a prenatal education class that encourages you to take your new skills home and practice them you are significantly more likely to use them during labour and to use fewer medical interventions! Win Win WIn!

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Have you registered for a prenatal education class yet?

If you haven’t, now is the time! Whether you can take your class around 25 weeks or not, try to choose a date that is going to leave you with enough time to process all of that info, connect with your care provider to ask questions, and to practice those skills! If you are in the Peterborough area we would love to see you in the Birth + Baby Prep School - the most inclusive, positive, and empowering class in the area!

How does a prenatal education class prepare DAD for birth?

" I wanted to take a class but he wasn't really into it!" 

Taking a prenatal education class is definitely NOT just for moms.  Dads have a lot to learn and typically don't spend as much time during those 40 weeks of pregnancy reading up on cervical changes, contractions, and other birthy stuff. But, if they want to be there for you during labour then getting on the same page is a must! 

So how can a prenatal education class help to prepare Dad to have a positive experience with birth and to be a kick ass birth partner? 

Peterborough prenatal education Hello Baby

Taking a class helps Dads know what to expect.

You will be the one giving birth but the birth of a child is an important experience for Dad, too. It is 100% normal for him to be emotional watching you labour. Watching someone work that hard and dig that deep can be tough when your partner doesn't have a good understanding of how birth works!  This is even more true when Dad is not sure if what you are experiencing is normal or cause for concern. Once you have taken a class, you will both have a solid understanding of the basics of birth and what labour can look and sound like. A good prenatal education class should help to answer your questions and take some of the mystery out of birth.

Taking a class helps Dads learn new skills to help during labour.

If Dad is your main birth partner, he is going to need to know what he can do to help you manage those contractions when they start to get more and more intense!  Some of his regular day to day massage techniques might help but sometimes you will need more targeted touch.  Taking a prenatal education class together means that Dad will have a chance to practice some new skills (usually called comfort measures) with you so he will know where to rub, press and squeeze for maximum pain relief while you labour that baby down! Being able to offer this kind of hands on pain relief really helps Dad step into role as your birth partner. 

Being on the same page means Dad can help you make choices along the way.

 A big part of being a birth partner is understanding birth and the different options and choices you will come upon as labour unfolds. When you take a class together, you are going into birth on the same page. It is not uncommon to hear from a Dad that he felt out of the loop or uncertain about what was going on at different times during birth. A prenatal education class will give Dad the language and tools to be an active part of birth and to feel included.  

Prenatal education is for Dads, too!

If you think you want to take a prenatal ed class but your partner is sitting on the fence, let him know all of the amazing information and skills he could learn by coming to class with you! 

How do you choose which prenatal education class to take?!

What is the point of a prenatal ed class?

Prenatal education classes (also called childbirth education classes or antenatal classes) are a great idea for just about everyone because they give you a chance to learn about the process of giving birth and to ask questions of your teachers as well as your peers. 

For someone who will be giving birth for the first time, there can be a lot of mystery surrounding what your body and your baby will be doing. For this group of people, a prenatal education class can help debunk myths, clear away fears, and make the prospect of giving birth much more positive and exciting! 

For someone who has already given birth, taking a prenatal education class is a wonderful refresher as well as a chance to create a new and different birth experience. 

For birth partners, the prenatal education class is a chance to get on the same page as their partner, to learn important tools and techniques to support someone in labour, and to create realistic expectations about what birth can be like.

In a good prenatal education class, there is truly something for everyone. 

Peterborough prenatal education Hello Baby

How do you choose which class is the right fit for you?

In most cities, big or small, there are at least a few options for prenatal education classes. The local hospital or public health unit will often offer a class (or series of classes) and there will also be classes offered by childbirth educators and/or doulas. So, when you have multiple options, how do you choose the right class for you?  Other than practical matters like budget and schedule, there are some important things you may want to factor into your choice!

5 tips for choosing the best prenatal ed class for you!

What kind of prenatal education class you choose to take will depend in large part on how you hope to give birth. For you and your birth partner to be able to actively work towards your ideal birth you will need answers to questions, a solid understanding of your options, a realistic understanding of the birth process, and some new skills. Here are some tips to help you choose the class that is right for you!

Tip #1: Find out who is teaching the class. 

The teacher has a huge impact on the perspective offered in your class.  What kind of certifications or education do the teachers of your class have?  What makes them qualified to teach prenatal education classes?  Were they trained according to a specific school of thought - for example, the Lamaze method or Hypnobirthing.  The training and education your teachers have will definitely affect the information presented in class!

For example, a class led by a doula trained and certified as a childbirth educator will be likely to offer information on a variety of options based on the health care providers and facilities available in the community and the goals of the students in the class! A doula brings her education, training, and experience supporting births with her to the classroom which gives a well rounded perspective on birth and the choices you can make when your big day comes. 

Tip #2: Ask for an outline of what is covered in class.

Before investing in a prenatal education class, you might want to know what is going to be covered!  If you have specific hopes or goals for your birth you will want to make sure that the class is going to cover the topics most important to you.  For a look at what a Hello, Baby! prenatal education class offers click HERE!

TIP #3: find out how many people will be in class with you.

Learning in a group setting is a great way to take a prenatal education class but how many people will be learning with you?  You may want to take this into consideration when choosing your class!  If you are someone who likes to interact with the teacher, ask questions, and get answers specific to your own situation, a class with a smaller number of participants will be better for you.  Hello, Baby! keeps our classes to about 10 people (5 pregnant folks and their birth partners) to make sure we have time to learn about your birth goals and answer questions as they come up.  

Tip #4: Choose a class held in a safe and comfortable space. 

If you are going to attend a class towards the end of your pregnancy (an ideal time is somewhere around 30 weeks or so) you are going to want to make sure that space is comfortable!  What kind of seating options do they have?  Where are the washrooms?  Will you have a chance to get up and move as you need?  Hello, Baby!'s classes are held in our beautiful downtown hub - a bright, comfortable space with couches, chairs, birth balls and yoga mats for your learning pleasure. We like to make sure everyone feels at ease in our space and able to do whatever their bodies tell them to!

Tip #5 : Find a class that speaks to both you and a birth partner!

As a pregnant person, chances are you have done a little reading, chatting, and googling about pregnancy and birth. There is a lot to learn about birth, especially if you have specific hopes and goals for your labour!  Your birth partner - whoever that is - may not have the same legwork done so a class that is going to include them in the learning process is super important!  Does the teacher consider you birth partner's emotional experience?  Does the class teach them how to physically comfort you while you labour?  Is your birth partner going to leave the class with a realistic understanding about what birth can be and how vital their role as a support person is?!  Hello, Baby!'s prenatal education classes makes sure to include birth partners in the learning and skill building process because we know how important their presence, words, and touch can be during birth. 

Birth + Baby Prep School

Hello, Baby!'s Birth + Baby Prep School is one of the best options in Peterborough for prenatal education!  Every class is taught by two trained and experience doulas, full of evidence based information about birth and baby care, and helps you work through all aspects of labour, birth, and those first few weeks with your baby.  The class has been created for you to take with a birth partner - we have had dads, wives, mothers, sisters, and friends step into that role!  The weekend is a great mix of talk, activities, skill building, videos, and getting to know all about one another and, of course, all about birth!  Our classes fill up quickly so register early and get excited about a positive and empowered birth experience.

Birth + Baby Prep School Summer Sessions

Summer school is in!

If you are looking for a hands-on prenatal education experience, Hello, Baby! has got you covered with the Birth + Baby Prep School weekend classes.  This convenient 2 day class will give you the confidence boost you need for an empowering and positive birth and get you ready to navigate life with a newborn. Our spring sessions filled up FAST so we have rolled out of summer dates!

Peterborough doula prenatal education

Birth Prep

Saturday (Day 1) is all about labour and birth!  Your Hello, Baby! doulas will help you create a recipe for a positive and empowering birth! LEARN and then PRACTICE is our motto. To get you and a birth partner ready for birthing your baby your way we will learn about: 

  • Hospital, Home or Clinic birth
  • Preparing for a positive and empowering birth - how the heck can we do this?
  • What can my birth partner do? 
  • What can I bring to my birth space?
  • What's a birth plan and how can I use it?
  • How can I cope emotionally and physically?
  • What are my pain relief and induction options? (natural and medical)
  • What is a doula and how can they help us?
  • What is a placenta? What can I do with it?
  • “What if” scenarios and how to cope

We will also practice positions, breathing exercises, and ways to cope through contractions and pushing. Class includes tons of instructional and empowering videos, exercises to demonstrate what we're learning about... and so much more!

Baby Prep

On Sunday we will be picking up where we left off, which is immediate recovery after birth, what newborns look like and the checks they may have, and what to do once you're settling in at home. Here's a look at some of the topics we cover in this class

  • How long will it take to heal from birth?
  • What can healing from a cesarean birth be like?
  • What is postpartum depression & how do I know if I have it?
  • How much will my baby sleep?
  • How often will my baby eat?
  • What the heck do I do with baby's umbilical cord stump?!
  • How do I swaddle my newborn?
  • What is breastfeeding & how does it work?
  • Who can help me with all of this... and so much more!

Register with a few quick clicks

You can register for all of Hello, Baby!'s classes online with a few easy steps. Choose your class, choose the date, provide your contact information and pay the class fee in less than five minutes!  Hello, Baby!'s Birth + Baby Prep School classes fill up fast so don't wait too long to grab your spot.