Birthing class can either help you learn and become very confident about upcoming birth or it can scare you even more and leave you clueless and unprepared for one the biggest events in your life.
That’s why it is very important to choose the right childbirth class.
Let me re-introduce myself again. I am a childbirth class junkie. Every time I come across a new book or a course about childbirth – I have to have it. So, I get a lot of people asking me the same questions:
- What are Birthing Class Types
Why do you want to take
Before you start shopping for a childbirth class, consider answering these questions first:
1. What kind of birth do we want?
2. Why do we want a birthing class?
3. What do we expect from it?
4. How much time can we spend learning the information?
5. Can we travel to the class every week or should we take online birthing class?
6. How much does dad want to be involved into the process of helping mother during labor and birth?
Personally, for us it was very important to learn about natural pain relief options. Since it was our 2nd baby I pretty much knew the whole process of labor and birth, so I was really concerned about the pain. I wanted to learn more about relaxation methods, massage, breathing.
Some other factors that were important to us:
- we could not go and take live classes, so we had to look into online childbirth classes
- we wanted a class for both of us. My husband wanted to learn how to be a better “help” during birth
- I wanted to lose my fear about the birth and be more confident this time
I wanted to feel in charge of my birth. I didn’t want to just listen to what everybody told me to do
Birthing Class Types
- Lamaze International
- Bradley Method
- Birth Boot Camp
- Alexander Technique
- Birthing from within
- The Pink Kit Method
4. A good online childbirth class can give you the same learning results, plus some extra points for being able to sit on your couch and have the class whenever you want. Birthing classes online. In this busy life it has become harder and harder for couples to find time and energy to attend childbirth classes every week. If you are OK with taking college classes online, you might find the online birth classes the best option for you.
Birthing Class Questions
Before signing up for a class it is a good idea to ask some questions to figure out as much as your can about the class and who is teaching it. Here is the list of questions that I like to use.
1. What method of childbirth is thought during the class?
2. Who is the instructor? What kind of experience does she/he have? How many years? What is her philosophy of birth?
3. What is covered during the classes? Class descriptions
4. How many classes? How long are they? How big is the class?
5. Does the class teach you how to write your own birthing plan?
6. Is the class “partner friendly”?
7. What pain relief techniques does the class teach?
8. What is the format of the class? Lecture, participatory?
9. What materials are provided? DVD, workbook?
10. What is the cost of the class?
Is Birthing Class Deductible?
Childbirth classes which are related to obstetrical care can be deductible. If a pregnant woman is being educated on the her role in active childbirth (that’s what majority birthing classes do) than it is obstetrical care which is included in the definition of medical care. So, if you itemize, these classes can be deducted as medical expense on Schedule A on your Form 1040.
Also, keep in mind that medical expenses are subject to the %7.5 of adjusted AGI (adjusted gross income) limitation.
Save the receipts and call your accountant for a professional advice.
My Favorite Birth Education class
Birth is a very personal experience. It is only up to you to know what is the best for you, your partner and your baby. Do your own due diligence and pick the best class.
After researching and going through many different classes (online and live) I picked my favorite course which fits our needs the best.
Birth Boot Camp online classes were created by a former Bradley method instructor (Donna Ryan) of 10 years. So if you are a fan of Bradley Method (which is one of the oldest birthing classes) you will find this class even better because it is updated and modernized.
This online birth course is for couples who:
- want a natural and non-medicated birth
- want to avoid cesarean section
- want to have a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean)
- want to be prepared mentally, physically and emotionally for a natural birth
How is Birth Boot Camp different from other childbirth education classes?
1. It’s modern, new, fresh and most importantly created with the latest research about natural childbirth.
2. It covers physical, mental and emotional aspects of birth and it teaches special techniques how to deal with them.
3. It’s easy to “follow” the course because of the documentary style of it. It seems like you are watching a good documentary, not a class.
4. It has some amazing birth stories which pregnant women love to hear.
5. It has a large team and the classes include content from Spinning Babies and Orgasmic Birth in addition to other “big” names in birth.
6. It is easy to get the partner on board because of the “Boot Camp” mood and setting of the whole program.
Why I loved Birth Boot Camp Classes
- There are 10 classes (1-2 hours each).
- Recommended time to start the course is when you are around 28 weeks pregnant.
Birthing Class #1
Why do you choose natural birth
What are the advantages of giving birth naturally? It kinda gives you more assurance, confidence and proof (for those who are trying to tell you differently).
It opens even a bigger picture about the importance of natural birth and helps you set firm goals and believe in this special mission – a natural childbirth even more.
Birthing Class #3
The place and the team
This class will help your pick the BEST choice for you.
You will find it helpful whether you are planning to give birth in the hospital, birth center or at home.
Confused about doulas and different types of midwives? I was. But after the class I figured it all and knew exactly what to ask my care providers and how to talk with my health insurance agent.
Birthing Class #5
Phases of labor
Knowing the phases of labor will help you deal with pain better. Not knowing causes a lot of fear. Fear leads to a lot of stress and this enlarges your concentration on pain. This class will educate you about what to expect during labor.
Birthing Class #7
Birthing the baby
Some birth videos are covered including water birth and best positions for mother to birth. This was very emotional class that truly replaced any fear I had left with joy and anticipation of meeting my baby.
Birthing Class #8
Be educated about your options
Being educated means knowing your options. This class will prepare you for unexpected things that can happen during labor and birth. You will also learn some things you can do to avoid C-section as well as when it is necessary.
Birthing Class #2
How to be healthy inside and outside
We learned about proper nutrition and physical training. I really liked the Chow chart (in the workbook) which helped me keep track of what I was eating and I could make sure to have a very balanced diet and keep accountable.
The physical preparation
This class included a pregnant Training instructor who showed the best exercises to do during your pregnancy so you can properly tone your muscles which will help birth the baby easier.
The other part of physical preparation was the relaxation methods which helped me a lot not only through my labor but just practicing various methods during my pregnancy made me much calmer. I still use some of them now and I am not even pregnant.
Birthing Class #4
Testing and procedures
Know and understand what kind of procedures are often done in the final weeks of pregnancy. This class talks about medical interventions and when are they necessary as well as when they can be avoided.
I got the Countdown which is good for planning your postpartum period, including breastfeeding support and finding a pediatrician. When you know and understand your options you will be able to face the last few weeks of pregnancy with confidence and excitement.
Birthing Class #6
This entire class is for your partner. He will learn very helpful and practical techniques how to help you during labor and birth. After all, your partner has a big role in your birth.
Birthing Class #9
Writing a birthing plan
With a lot of information provided until class 9, you will sure be ready to write your own birth plan, which will be unique, yet very respected and cared for no matter where you birth. It felt so good to know so much to be able to make decisions regarding our birth. The confidence was over the roof!
Second part of this class talked about the very first moments and common procedures right after the birth: placenta delivery, cord clamping, skin to skin contact, initiating breastfeeding.
Birthing Class #10
After the birth
This last class is learning about the life after the baby comes. Find out the easiest transition path to parenthood, how to bond with your baby and many more useful tips that are so important for the whole family.
How much does it cost? Is it worth it?
The Price: $295.
Personally, it seemed a lot to me at first, but when I discovered how much I was getting for it I felt that it was worth it.
The whole course had interviews with couples who shared their inspiring birth stories, the interviews with professionals filled with valuable information, access to a certified instructor, relaxation downloads, breastfeeding class download, almost 160 pages professional full color workbook that goes along with a DVD.
The average cost of live childbirth class is more than $300, plus you have to add the cost of transportation, the babysitter (if you have kids) when instead you could be just sitting on your couch (or the birthing ball) and learning about birth.
Find out more about Birth Boot Camp Class.
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