RaMa Mama Doula Share: Prenatal Classes To Prepare For Birth...

Most mothers-to-be have heard of Lamaze classes either from movies or from their doctors. In this modern day, there are more options available. Let's talk about what some of the mothers have suggested from their own personal experiences.

First of all, there is Lamaze. It is the most widely used childbirth method in the United States. These classes offer at least 12 hours of instruction, and an approach that opens every mother to their options in order to make their own choices. Lamaze classes include teaching techniques on labor/birth positioning, relaxation techniques, breathing techniques, effective ways to communicate to the medical staff, medical procedures, how to breastfeed, and other valuable information on how to have the most healthy pregnancy, labor, birth, and delivery.

The Alexander Technique is a more holistic, full body approach to pregnancy, labor, and delivery. It teaches how to cope with labor pain instead of escaping it. There are exercises and wisdom taught to help the mother-to-be understand how they move, breath, sit, stand, or lay down is what matters the most. Through mindful and conscious awareness of the various signals that the body gives a mother, this technique directs her to respond in productive ways instead of reacting out of control.

The Bradley Method, otherwise known as the husband-coached birth, prepares the baby's father to be a birth coach, while preparing the mother to deliver the baby without pain medication. This method teaches about unexpected and emergency situations that can happen in birth and what to do in case of a cesarean section. There are also 12 sessions to attend, and they offer breastfeeding techniques, postpartum care, relaxation techniques, nutrition, exercise, and practice sessions to rehearse labor and delivery.

Hypno-birthing, or the Mongan Method, consists of 12 hours offered in 4-5 classes. Mothers learn how to self-hypnotize in order to manage pain and have the most natural labor, birth, and delivery possible. Through visualization, breath work, positive affirmations, concentration, and mindfulness, mothers learn relaxation techniques that help them manage stress hormones and anxiety. This technique also offers information on how the body changes and what happens in labor.

Birthing From Within is another holistic approach to childbirth. This technique offers mothers the ability to uncover their natural instincts by discovering as much about themselves as they can to prepare for childbirth. The many different possibilities, coping strategies, and skills taught are designed to prepare new parents for anything that may happen during labor, birth, and delivery. There is no specific type of birth method taught, but instead, mothers and fathers are validated on the choices they make and the ability to find the beauty and contentment in whatever happens - planned or not planned. There are planning sessions as well as physical, mental, and emotional processing for the most successful birth experience.

Whether you are a first time parent learning about what to expect on the day of birth, or you have many children and want to learn new techniques, birthing classes can support more peace of mind and heart leading up to and on the day of birth. Creating a birth plan, making informed decisions, and listening to oneself to decide what is best for each parent is crucial in creating a birth experience that is supported and nurtured with care. Finding the best class for you is important in supporting the journey to bringing this new life here on the Earth. Reach out, sign up, and show up to the resources available should you need support and guidance on your birth journey. All mothers have resources available when they ask for help. Never hesitate to get support. It could be the factor that makes your next birth less traumatic, more peaceful, and extra special.

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