Post # 1
I need some opinions. I am 27 weeks with my first baby. My hospital offers an array of classes… some free and some not. One of the classes is a “Birthing Prep” class. It is an all day course centered around recognizing labor, pain mainagment during labor/transition, birthing positions, etc. It is about $200 for my hubby and I to attend.
Here is my mental struggle… IF I am lucky enough to have a vaginal birth, I will be asking for an epidural. I will be giving birth in a hospital as well. My thinking is, if I am going to have an epidural and not be able to feel much and/or move around, why do I need to take a day long course to cover how to cope with labor? I am trusting of my doctor and nurses, that I plan to listen to what they tell me to do. When I start getting ready to push, I will listen to the nurses and/or doctor for guidance.
They have some other courses that I would rather spend my time and money on: Newborn Basics (swaddeling, basic care) and a breastfeeding class.
Am I making a mistake by not taking the birthing class? Or can I do enought research/reading and talking to other mamas to prepare myself for what to expect…. Would love to hear your thoughts!
Post # 2
Even with an epidural you may still have options with regard to pain management, laboring positions, and coping mechanisms for early labor at home You will also learn about other interventions that may be available to you during labor so you can make informed choices should they be presented to you.
Medicated labor is still a tremendously demanding process that requires active participation by the mother. I think the more empowered you can be regarding this enormous event the better, and the more options you are aware of for labor (epidural or not) the more you can advocate for yourself.
Post # 3
in our hospital birthing class – it was 1 6 hour session or 3 2 hour sessions.
we learned birthing technique, but they also talked about the hospital policies, safety, security, the procedures they do to the baby after it arrives. we also learned what we had to ask for/what is available but not readily given at the hospital. we got a tour of the labor and postpartum rooms.
while i think it could have been condensed into less time, i did learn some information.
we also took baby basics (my husband needed this more than me) but we learned to swaddle properly. we also too cpr and safety which i felt was very valuable information to know.
$200 is a lot of money, but find out exactly what the agenda is before you commit. if you don’t think it is worth it, i would skip it. it isn’t mandatory.
Post # 4
I’d do the course, there are no certainties with labour or birth.
You might plan on having an epidural but it might not be possible. My labour was only 6 hours. By the time I got to the hospital it was too late to have one. I did it all on gas and air.
Its also good to be fully prepared for the side effects for all pain relief.
Its also good for your hubby to know how to support you in labour.
Post # 5
indiblue : ajillity81 : Twizbe :
All very valid points… after reading, I think we need to do the class. Better to be safe than sorry…
Post # 6
I didn’t take a class – I wasn’t naive, but I went in with the idea that whatever happens happens.
My friend did take a class and was traumatized. Another friend told me it was a waste of time.
Post # 7
The other benefit of the class is meeting local mums due around the same time as you. I met some lovely women in mine and we regularly meet up. We have a whatsapp group which is great at 3am when we are all up feeding.
Not sure on your situation, but I live in London and have few local friends with children. Meeting these mums was so important for me. And has given me people to hang out with while I’m on maternity leave
Post # 8
It was not worth it to me because I didn’t want to pay money for a birthing class. I ended up doing fine.
Post # 9
I have a friend that got an epidural…and it didn’t work. Another friend that made it to the hospital and it was too late to get an epidural. Then my sister in law got an epidural and it blocked off most of the pain, but she could still feel quite a bit.
I’m not trying to scare you, just trying to make the point that birth is not the same for every woman and I am definitely taking the class before my LO comes. I’d much rather be safe than sorry. Also, if you’re worried about the cost, shop around. Not all classes are the same and you don’t have to take it at the hospital you’re delivering at. The class I’m taking is at a women’s clinic and it’s much cheaper than the one offered at my hospital.
Post # 10
my husband and i just completed a series of prepared childbirth classes and we enjoyed them. they covered stages of labor, breathing techniques, positions, pain management, breastfeeding…i definitely recommend taking a class. it’s good to know the possible scenarios that can occur during labor. i don’t have a birth plan, i’m just going to go with the flow- i’ll see how it goes without any drugs, but if i say want an epidural, i don’t want anyone trying to change my mind; if i need a c-section, let’s do it. i’m not going to fight it or be upset about it.
even if you know you want an epidural, it’s still good to know breathing techniques, positions, etc. because you’re not going to be given an epidural at the start of labor. you probably won’t even be admitted to the hospital until you’re 4-6 centimeters
Post # 11
I went to 2 of the 6 classes in the course with my first baby. I would read books and do research so you are informed and prepared, but spend your money on the other things you mentioned.
Post # 12
I’m a labor and delivery nurse and I can’t emphasize enough the importance of coming to the birth of your baby informed and prepared. No two births are the same and regardless of what your plans are, knowing what is happening to your body and the techniques to help your body out are priceless. If you don’t attend a class, read and do research. It’s sad how many women embark on something so significantly personal and life changing without any kind of preparation. I’m a huge advocate of women knowing their bodies and what their bodies are capable of, of being informed and educated and most of all, of being prepared. Even if things don’t go as planned, you’re more aware and educated than you were if you had not prepared. I would definitely reach out to other moms and rent a birth video or something. There are many great resources at the library. Good luck with everything!
Post # 13
We were lucky enough to take a class that covered childbirth, breastfeeding and infant care. I got an epidural during labor (which I had planned on doing), but the class really helped me make smart choices and keep realistic expectations about my labor – I have seen many of my friends have a lot of anxiety and questions that would have been addressed/prevented by talking a childbirth class. It was also nice to take a class because they tried to present an unbiased perspective and could answer specific questions for us. My class was at a hospital that I wasn’t planning on using, so maybe you can take classes at a different hospital where it might be less expensive? (I live in Seattle and our 6 week course was $200)
Post # 14
- Wedding: June 2014 - DD born 2015 DS born 2017
Even if you’re planning on an epidural you’ll still experience labour and contractions before it kicks in, and epidurals can fail or wear off, or be delayed if it’s busy. Epidurals aren’t some magic medicine! You will need to know about counterpressure massage, breathing techniques and positions. Definitely take the class!
Plus you might be surprised, I had an unmediated birth and labour wasn’t that bad with breathing and counterpressure. It didn’t hurt, but everyone’s experience is so different.
Post # 15
I went to classes, i went to pregnancy gym the whole shabang. I went into labour and forgot it all! My breathing was… more hyperventilating, back rubs didnt work for me, bath was okay but i wanted to walk around.
Im not bothering this time, i just found labour was about survival (my classes didnt teach me this 😬) so this time im going in to survive, if i scream like a banshee and forget to meditate so be it!