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Thread: antenatal classes

  1. #1
    DoubleK Guest

    Default antenatal classes

    we are going to our first antenatal class tonight! i'm looking forward to it but i dont really know what to expect!

    what exactly do u do in these classes? it said on the form they cover 'pregnancy, labour, birth and baby'.... obviously! my partner keeps asking if we will have to watch a video of a birth... coz i'm not sure he is too keen on seeing that!

    also a lot of people have told me they are a waste of time and money.. i just grit my teeth, smile and say, 'well, a bit more information can't hurt' if i want to have classes i will! grrr lol



    Rach

  2. #2

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    I think it depends on the class as to what you do and cover.
    You will probably have to watch a labour and birth video. As far as I can tell alot of the hospitals use the same video. The 'stars' of the video are a really 80's looking couple and the woman has a jungle down below. Its a bit funny to think that the baby is probably old enough to be having her own children by now. The midwife who taught us said that they were making a new video so I maybe you will get that one.
    We had to look at a heap of still photos as well as the video and they freaked me out far more than the video. DH wasn't half so turned off as me.
    I found ours really usefull - not so much for me becuase I had read quite a few books and had BB but for DH. He learnt heaps from the class and remembered far more than I expected. He still retains heaps of it - especially the part about sex helping to linduce labour .
    The bit where we had to practise positions was really funny - we had a really earnest middle aged hippy lady with frizzy hair in our class and she was the first to volunteer to demonstrate every position. She would get a really intense facial expression and start breathing really heavily every time she assumed a position and DH and I had to try really hard not to get the giggles. I think our teacher thought we were a bit immature LOL.

    You will probably do a bit about breastfeeding - we had a life size doll baby and all the guys had to breastfeed thiers (DH and I lost ours - it was on the floor behind us #-o ) in differant positions. The teacher also had a fabric boob with layers that peeled back to show how breastfeeding works.

    There might be a tour of the birthing rooms where you will be able to play with the beds and equipment and maye get a suck on the gas.

    They will probably explain your pain relief options and hopefully teach you a few natural techniques. They might also discuss unexpected outcomes, birth plans, perineal care, recovering from the birth, post-natal depression and so on.
    In our class we started by discussing what we all wanted to learn about so to a certain extent it was student directed (although I assume that most classes end up with a similar list of topics to cover).
    HTH.

  3. #3

    Join Date
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    Rach

    We thought our classes were great too. Ours were free through the hospital though we would have paid to go to them if we had to.

    We have so far found them to be really informative and a great way to meet and talk to other people due around the same time.

    Ours is split into 4 sessions (Intro/General Info, Labour & Birth, Unexpected Outcomes & Going Home with a New Baby) and thena seperate breast feeding session.

    I think one of the most important things during labour for me is knowing and understanding what is going on around me and because of the classes I will have a clear undestanding of policies/procedures etc.

    We only had one birthing video shown (natural) and we didn't have to stay to watch it. It actually wasn't that bad though. They offer for you to borrow tapes/videos if you'd rather watch it at home as well.

    I expected the classes to scare me but surprisingly enough it actually inspired me IYKWIM. I know that I can do this now and I know the hospital will support me with my choices as well!

    I hope you have a great time!!

  4. #4

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    Rachy, private childbirth education classes are MUCH better and I think some private health fund providers give rebates for some of them. If you are aiming for a natural birth, in Melbourne I highly recommend Rhea Dempsey's 'Transforming Pain' workshop. You can see the details here: http://www.birthingwisdom.com.au - she is the woman who trained me and I have attended these classes. Also Choices for Childbirth sessions are brilliant and are held in Brunswick and South Yarra - they are only $10 a session I think!
    Kelly xx

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  5. #5

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    I also found it useful to ask questions on the way the hospital operate & how they can facilitate my wishes.
    That's what I really liked about the classes as well. It was surprising how flexible and understanding my hospital is - especially with it being rather small and me only being a public patient!

  6. #6
    DoubleK Guest

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    i really enjoyed the class!!!

    the lady pulled out a plastic pelvis bone and material vagina.. and showed us exactly how the baby comes out (using a doll) it was really good! lol

    we also watched a video on newborn appearances (so we aren't alarmed if the baby has red marks on her face or the head is out of shape)

    we went through the labour process, and some terminology..

    Dean and i definitely felt very young compared to the rest of the people in the class!!

  7. #7

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    I'm glad you enjoyed the classes!

    We had something very similar - and newborn babies aren't always pretty are they hehe??

    I felt very young as well (I was the youngest there!)

    I loved the doll they had - ours had an attachable placenta by the umbilical cord and amniotic sac thing LOL - very cute.

    Very funny when the midwife was trying to show us how a 'good' baby would be positioned and birthed... the doll wasn't cooperating as well as she'd liked so it got a little smushed and she was like 'just pretend that part didn't happen' LMAO....

    Just edited to add that at my last class they had a newborn there who was crying quite a bit - that night my breast started leaking :-k I wonder if there was a connection there LOL

  8. #8

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    I took the antenatal classes because this is my first baby and I felt that I should, but on the whole, I found them to be pretty self-explanatory. The only part I was really interested in was the actual stages of labour and discussion about pain management (I ended up hiring a TENS machine because of this bit) so I think I could have done without the rest!

    Probably next time around, depending on how things go this time, I might look at an alternative class such as Choices for Childbirth or similar.

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