Pregnancy, birth and early parenting
The topics included in your My Birth and Baby antenatal course or session will be tailored to meet your needs. So we’ll start by talking through your hopes and fears, what questions you have and what’s important to you. If you’re having a one-off session, we’ll have that chat on the phone first.
The focus throughout will be on providing you with information so that you can make informed choices that you are happy with. Alongside that will be time for you to consider the options and what seems right to you. This includes considering how you might make decisions if things change and you need to deviate from your original plan. It’s also very practical, with lots of photos and other aids. You’ll have the opportunity to practice things like back massage and positions for labour, but only if you want to!
The exact topics we cover will vary depending on what you want us to include. It might be that this isn’t your first baby but you want a refresher. Or maybe you know you will be having a caesarean birth. If so, a shorter course will probably be right for you. Or maybe you want to cover everything in the full course. That would usually include the following topics.
- Late pregnancy Everything from your rights at work to discomforts like indigestion and coping with lack of sleep. Also the complications that occasionally develop so that you are aware of what to look out for.
- Preparing your body for labour This includes topics such as pelvic floor exercises, perineal massage, exercise and how to encourage your baby into a good position for birth.
Labour and birth
- What actually happens? What is your body doing and what will it feel like?
- Is this it? The signs that labour may be starting and what to do when they happen.
- Where to give birth? Considering the various options and the pros and cons of each.
- Enabling normal birth What you can do to maximise your chances of having a straightforward, intervention-free labour and birth. This includes practical suggestions, such as positions to try in labour, with a focus on encouraging your baby into a goo position for birth.
- Coping with contractions This includes self-help options, such as massage, breathing, hypnobirthing and using a birth pool. We’ll also discuss the drugs that can you use for pain relief.
- Being a birth partner What’s your role, how can you both help and feel involved?
- Interventions in labour Understand the interventions that may be offered or recommended, why they might be suggested and what they involve. But also consider how to make decisions in difficult situations and how to reduce the likelihood of needing such interventions. Focus on how to have a positive birth experience if they become necessary.
- Caesarean birth What happens if you want or need a caesarean? How can you make it a positive experience?
- Birth plan Pulling it all together into your birth plan, considering what you want to happen and what if things don’t go quite as you’d hoped.
- Hypnobirthing Deep relaxation, positive thinking, breathing and other hypnobirthing techniques can be incorporated into the course.
The postnatal period
- The Golden Hour Focus on the hour after birth, skin-to-skin cuddling and the first feed as your baby adapts to life in the outside world.
- Recovering from birth Thinking about stitches, bleeding and all the other things that often aren’t spoken about so that you know what to expect and how to take care of yourself in the days after your baby is born.
- Newborn baby As well as the practical issues like safe sleeping and changing nappies, we’ll think about your baby’s emotional needs and how you would like to parent your baby.
- Breastfeeding A full session dedicated to feeding your baby including how babies breastfeed, how to be sure that he or she is getting enough milk, how often you’ll be feeding and all the practical know-how you need.
Find out more by clicking on the links below or contact me if you’ve got any questions.