All posts tagged: Antenatal Classes

Pregnancy & Birth Conversations: January

I work with so many parents I am going to start to share just a little bit of the conversations we have and the questions I am asked. I started a new antenatal course last night with a brilliant group where conversation flowed and the questions kept coming. This is why I run small groups and 1:1 sessions, so parents can be honest, they can share and they have a platform to be heard and to focus on their need for knowledge, strategies and reassurance. It’s a privilege to do my job, I work hard at it, it’s my passion and I love working with parents in this way.

Prioritising straightforward birth

At some point during your pregnancy, you will need to focus on the birth of your baby – to know more about how it all works, what helps, what doesn’t, what your options are, how you can manage contractions and energy and what your strategies might be. It’s about good knowledge and practical skills, questions, realistic expectations and a good dose of feistiness when needed. This helps you and your birth partner become better prepared for labour, birth and any challenges.

being induced

Do you feel confident about labour and birth?

Childbirth can be straightforward and empowering but it can also be challenging and a test of endurance so it is worth being equipped with good knowledge, practical skills and strategies, birth confidence and realistic expectations of both straightforward and more complicated labour. Going into labour without knowing more of what to expect could leave you struggling to stay calm and unable to work with your contractions. It can help to think about… Do you feel confident about working with your contractions? Do you understand what your body needs to do to bring you your baby? Do you know how to use your breathing to stay calm and focused? Do you have any questions about using movement & positions? What do you expect from your midwife? What birth support might you need? What could be helpful to you during labour? What could be unhelpful during labour? Do you know what an induction might involve and how to manage it? Do you know what a caesarean involves? If you need/choose an epidural, do you know how to …

What type of birth do you want?

The response to this varies a lot and there’s obviously no exact answer – it’s so personal to everyone but that’s the point. It’s an important question to think about because it goes beyond just wanting everyone to be ok – we all want that – it can help you to focus on what you would like your labour and birth to be like, what your options are and how you make that happen. I work with expectant parents who have such different birth preparation needs – caesarean, induction, anxiety, homebirth, wanting an undisturbed labour, wanting an epidural – my job is to provide the information as well as posing the questions to work out options and strategies for more control and calm rather than over medical if that isn’t needed. Think about what you would like it to look like and then explore your options to make that happen. Labour and birth don’t have to be medically cold and without options – caesareans can be calm, induction can involve positions and gravity and a …

Straightforward Birth – read well and work with an experienced birth practitioner

There’s so much information about birth out there, so where do you start? On Social Media…It’s worth following a few good practitioners on social media so you can gather the right information for you. Birth, Baby & FamilyInstagram: @birthbabyandfamilyFacebook: @birthbabyandfamily Evidence Based Birth Practising Midwife Journal Bump, Birth & Beyond Dr Sara Wickham Books…These are some of my favourites because of their brilliant content and the tone is just right! Your No Guilt Pregnancy Plan by Rebecca Schiller The Positive Birth Book by Milli Hill The Positive Breastfeeding Book by Amy Brown Give Birth Like A Feminist by Milli Hill Ina May’s Guide To Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin Guides…Based on evidence and experience, these guides accompany my antenatal courses.The Practical Guide to Labour & Birth by Janine Smith Not all antenatal classes are the same – work with a good birth practitioner… Good antenatal classes are worth the investment but do your research first, take a look at their website, their social media and get in touch to ask them questions. You might need …