Kayla Smith, Birth Doula and Hypnobabies© Childbirth Instructor writes a four part blog series on Nashville, Tennessee childbirth education options. Today's topic is on childbirth education misconceptions.
Upcoming blog posts:
Part I: Childbirth Education Misconceptions
Part II: Breaking Barriers
Part III: What are my childbirth class options? (Local to Nashville, TN and nationwide)
Part IV: Hypnobabies © Class Options
Kayla chose to become a doula after a fabulous second birth experience. She decided that she wanted to be a part of helping families have the best birth for them. She became a Hypnobabies© Childbirth instructor in 2015. She loves helping families understand their options during pregnancy and birth. To learn more about class options click here.
Ok, so you've decided that childbirth education is a good thing, and you've figured out some possible ways to make it happen for you. Now, which childbirth education course or methodology should you choose? There is a seemingly endless sea of options, especially in a larger city. Nashville may not be as big as some, but you don't need to be told that it is growing at a fast rate. We also have a large range of childbirth education options to serve all those people. Here, I'll give you a quick list of your options and how to narrow it down.
1. Hospital-based preparation for childbirth classes
These classes are generally one-day classes meant to give you the very basic information about childbirth. These classes typically give you information about the hospital itself, hospital policies, and pain relief options that are available to you. They will usually give some limited information on relaxation and pain management techniques that you can do on your own. These are definitely the least time-consuming classes to take, and often the cheapest, although they do tend to present the least amount information to you.
2. Online courses and/or self-paced home studies
A quick Google search will bring up quite an impressive list of online childbirth education courses and/or self-paced home study courses. Most of these do charge a fee similar to the fee you would pay for an in-person class. A few are totally free. These provide varying levels of education and preparation for your childbirth experience. In general "you get what you pay for." One of the biggest benefits to taking an online childbirth education or home study course can also be its biggest drawback: they are self-paced. This aspect makes them a great fit for a busy schedule, but then again, if your schedule is that busy, are you really going to force yourself to sit down and do the work? You know you better than I do. Are you willing to stick with it, be self-motivated, and make time to get through the course? Or do you do better with some accountability? Another benefit can be the cost. As I mentioned, some of these are totally free. These are also great for those of us who are Super-Introverts (insert epic superhero music here) and would prefer to take a course from the comfort of our own home. Another drawback, of course, is the varying levels of ability to ask questions and get personalized attention from an instructor. These are much easier and more likely with an in-person class.
The quick list: Hypnobabies Home Study, Baby Center Online Childbirth Education Course, Birth Boot Camp, Mama Natural, Lamaze, Fit Pregnancy, and more!
3. Local, non-hospital-based, in-person classes
These classes are sometimes one-day "crash courses" and sometimes a series spanning anywhere from 6 to 12 weeks. Getting started in a series-type class can be a time-sensitive issue. If you take the class too early, you may forget some of the important information, but if you take it too late you may have your baby before you finish the class. There are quite a lot of benefits to taking this type of class. First, is the personalized attention from your childbirth educator. During an in-person class, you are able to ask questions as they come up, and learn from the questions that other couples ask. A childbirth educator may also be able to tailor the class to meet the unique needs of the students in her class. Another big benefit of this type of class is the accountability. You already know when you are going to go to each class and can set that time aside beforehand. Then, if there is any work to be done between classes, you will be more likely to get it done when you know the other students in your class will be doing theirs. Relationship building is another potential benefit to this type of class. You will meet new couples who are also expecting a new baby, most likely around the same time you are, and you will be able to build relationships with them. Although, for you introverts, sometimes these are able to be done as a private class, either in your home or in another location.
Courses local to the Nashville area (some of these courses may be in other areas also):
Hypnobabies, Lamaze, Birthing from Within, Nashville Childbirth, Roots Childbirth, Transitions Childbirth, Bradley Method, Nova Childbirth Education, Alpha Childbirth, Hypnobirthing.
You may have noticed that a couple of the courses listed above are listed both in the "Online and Home study" section and the "Live, in-person" section. One of these is Hypnobabies. Hypnobabies has a special place in my heart. As I've mentioned in previous posts, I did not take a childbirth education course before my oldest was born. When I was pregnant with my second, I took Hypnobabies and I never looked back. My Hypnobabies birth was such a positive experience for me, I decided I wanted to be a part of helping women and families have the best births for them. I started as a birth doula, and later became a Hypnobabies instructor and Hypno-Doula. I really appreciate that Hypnobabies gives complete information about the pregnancy and birth process, gives unbiased, well-sourced information about the benefits and risks of various interventions, and gets families thinking about the postpartum period. I especially appreciate that Hypnobabies does this while utilizing post-hypnotic suggestions, hypnosis cues, and daily affirmations to help expecting parents enjoy pregnancy and birth to the fullest!
If you would like more information about Hypnobabies, please check out the Hypnobabies tab on our website, check out www.Hypnobabies.com, or "tune in next time" when I will give more info about your Hypnobabies options.