Prenatal care classes are a great way to prepare for pregnancy and childbirth. You’ll learn about the physical and emotional needs of you and your baby. You’ll also have the chance to ask questions and receive valuable advice. In addition, you’ll meet other moms-to-be in the class, who can provide you with support and friendship.
Preparing for the birth of your baby
Bringing a new baby home can be a daunting task. It’s important to make sure you have everything you need for the first few days. Thankfully, there are many services available to help you.
One of the best things to do before the birth of your baby is to research and choose the best healthcare provider. You’ll be seeing this provider for the next few months, so it’s important to find one you can trust.
Preparing for the arrival of your baby can be an exciting time for the whole family. However, it’s also a stressful time for everyone. Taking some simple steps to prepare the home for the newborn’s arrival can ease some of the strain.
For example, stocking the house with items like smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors can protect your family from dangerous toxins. A well-stocked bathroom can also help.
Similarly, taking a tour of the hospital before the birth of your child can be a great way to familiarize yourself with the delivery room and the equipment you’ll need. Getting in the habit of writing down any questions you might have before your visit can pay off big.
Increasing motivation to breastfeed
The benefits of breastfeeding are well-established. Breastfeeding has proven to reduce the risk of several pediatric health problems, both for the mother and her baby. It is often viewed as the “gold standard” of nutrition for babies. However, breastfeeding rates in the United States are relatively low.
The World Health Organization’s Baby-friendly Hospital Initiative aims to increase breastfeeding rates through healthcare facilities that follow a ten-step plan to ensure successful breastfeeding. Several studies have examined the effects of interventions designed to target breastfeeding. Increasing motivation to breastfeed during prenatal care class is one intervention that has shown promise.
Motivational interviewing (MI) is a technique used to promote breastfeeding in a one-on-one setting. Researchers in Appalachia found that women enrolled in a single session of MI were more likely to breastfeed at one month postpartum.
Research suggests that negative experiences of breastfeeding can negatively influence a woman’s perception of the experience. In contrast, positive experiences can encourage high self-efficacy in breastfeeding and increase a woman’s motivation to breastfeed.
Saving money on medical costs for low-birth-weight babies
One of the most common inquiries we receive at our prenatal counseling clinic is “how much does childbirth cost?” The cost of pregnancy is not something you can take lightly, so figuring out the cost of bringing home the newest member of the family can be a bit daunting. Although the actual cost can be pricey, knowing what to expect can help you plan ahead for the unforeseen. Depending on your location, the cost of having a baby can vary by the second, making your budgeting decisions even more critical. If you are in the market for a new ride, the best way to get a good deal on the cost of childbirth is to shop around. Most health plans have coverage for newborns, if you are lucky enough to be able to enroll. Regardless of your specific situation, finding the best rate can be done by contacting your health insurance provider and doing some legwork.
Working with peer counselors
Working with peer counselors in a prenatal care class can be a very helpful resource. They can provide information and encouragement to new parents as they prepare for their first child. Peer counselors can also help mothers develop confidence in breastfeeding. A peer counselor can come to a hospital to provide support during the first days after delivery.
In addition, they can provide postpartum support. A peer counselor will visit the mother-infant dyad at least once a day from the day after delivery until at least six months after the baby’s birth. Their visits include discussing the reasons for EBF, providing encouragement, and helping the family develop a positive attitude about breast feeding.
Breastfeeding peer counselors are often local women who have successfully breastfed their own children. They are trained in counseling and breastfeeding education and can speak the language of their clients.
Peer counselors take a 20-hour training course to learn about nursing basics and counseling skills. They may lead prenatal classes and follow-up support groups.