Saturday, June 01, 2013
Prenatal Classes…..Are They Important?
By: Ashley Clayton, RN
You’re coming into your pregnancy and you have so many questions about what to expect during your pregnancy, during your labor and delivery and then afterwards. During this time you may have many questions and many fears; these are very common feelings to have.
Taking a prenatal class is a wonderful way to learn some of the answers to the many questions that you have been wondering about. Taking this course is not a requirement to giving birth, you will still give birth whether you have taken a class or not; however, this course might help ease some of your concerns and answer your questions that you may have.
Most importantly, prenatal classes help expectant parents learn about, and prepare for their labor and delivery. Taking a prenatal class can help you avoid some of the scary information that is so easily available via the internet. Search labor and delivery or receiving an epidural on Google and you will get an astonishing number of results! This much information can be overwhelming and some can be inaccurate. Prenatal classes can answer many questions regarding the labor process, vaginal deliveries, cesarean deliveries, breathing techniques and pain management. Many times in your prenatal class, information regarding the care of your newborn will also be discussed.
There are many benefits to taking a prenatal class; you can get information regarding multiple topics, not just labor and delivery. Things that your instructor may discuss include: the developments of your infant, healthy developments during pregnancy, warning signs of pregnancy that you should contact your physician about, how to write a birth plan, signs that you may be in labor, what to expect during your labor and delivery, the role of your labor coach, pain management and breathing techniques. Some prenatal classes may also give you a tour of the labor and delivery unit at the hospital. Another benefit of taking prenatal classes is that you may meet other expectant parents and find support in them. Who is better to provide support and understand what you are going through than someone who is experiencing the same things you are at that very moment? Prenatal classes are not just for mommies but for daddies too. Bring your husband or labor coach along with you, so that they will know what to expect also when the big day arrives!
When choosing a prenatal class, you want to choose one that is right for you; one that you feel comfortable with and that you feel meets your needs and personal beliefs. There are many types of classes to choose from, a good class will cover multiple topics and discuss the different situations that you may encounter in labor and delivery. If there is something specific you want to know from your instructor, always feel free to ask as many questions as you want or contact the labor and delivery unit that you will be delivering at. Regardless of the type of class you decide to take, hopefully you will feel more at ease and more prepared for when your special bundle of joy decides to make their appearance. Enjoy your pregnancy!
If you are interested in taking a prenatal class, contact Missouri Baptist Sullivan Hospital Labor and Delivery unit at 573-468-1968 for further information regarding prenatal classes available at the hospital.
Ashley is pictured with her cousins Hollan and Houston, both whom were born at Missouri Baptist Sullivan Hospital.