If you or your partner is pregnant, it is best to attend a childbirth class to get ready for birth. A childbirth class will prepare you for labor and birth. There are several types of childbirth classes: Lamaze class, The Bradley method class, Alexander technique class, Hypnobirthing class, etc.
Lamaze class is one of the most popular childbirth classes. In this article, you will learn whether the Lamaze method is suitable for you, when you should attend a Lamaze class, how you should choose the appropriate Lamaze class and curriculum of a Lamaze class as well. Let’s read on to learn details of Lamaze method.
1-) What is Lamaze Class?
Having a baby is a long and joyous journey. First, you decide to have a baby and you learn what to do before pregnancy and how to prepare your body for pregnancy. Once you took necessary steps to get pregnant, you look for how to get pregnant. Once you get pregnant, it is now the time for getting ready for the delivery!
At this point, you should attend a childbirth class. Depending on the techniques and curriculum, a childbirth classes can be a one-day course or weekly sessions which can take around a month. The main focus of a childbirth class is relaxing you regarding the birth, minimizing fears and helping to make conscious decisions.
Lamaze is actually one of the several childbirth techniques and in a Lamaze class, you learn this technique to give a birth naturally. Lamaze method has been developed by French obstetrician Ferdinand Lamaze. That’s why the method took its name from the surname of the originator. Inception of the Lamaze method was dealing with controlled breathing techniques to cope with labor.
Lamaze method became famous in 1960 after an American woman, Marjorie Karmel, gave birth with the assistance of Dr. Lamaze. She wrote a book “Thank You, Dr. Lamaze”. This book changed the common scene of a childbirth where the labor pain of women is reduced with medical interventions and husbands waiting in hospital corridors in panic. Lamaze method evolved over time and the Lamaze classes become the most popular childbirth class.
According to Lamaze International, the ultimate purpose of Lamaze class is to assist women learn to trust their inner wisdom and make conscious decisions about their healthcare. Women learn simple coping tactics, breathing and moving techniques and other ways of increasing comfort during delivery. Fundamental philosophy of Lamaze is, “birth is normal, natural and healthy”. Therefore, women can give birth without any medical intervention. However, Lamaze also proposes that women must be aware of they may need medical intervention during delivery and they should get this medical assistance if it is needed.
While the main focus of a Lamaze class is helping women to prepare themselves for giving a birth naturally, your labor partner will also learn how to encourage and support you during delivery. Therefore, you should attend to the Lamaze class with your partner who will be with you during the birth.
2-) Is Lamaze Class Right For Me?
Lamaze class is suitable for every woman who is planning to give a natural birth. Lamaze is used by 25% of all mothers, which is by far the most popular childbirth method. A typical Lamaze class takes around 12 hours and you will learn simple and natural strategies. These are: rhythmic breathing, hydrotherapy, massage, changing positions and walking.
During your Lamaze class, you will be informed of what you should expect during and after birth. You will learn about possible complications and how you can overcome these complications. You will get tips about how to communicate with hospital personnel, breastfeeding, interacting with baby etc. as well.
There is a common misconception that Lamaze is an anti-pain method. Actually, Lamaze class will help you to have a healthy, natural and relaxed delivery. If you are in early stages of pregnancy, 16 weeks of pregnant or less, you can consider attending our online pregnancy course as well.
3-) When Should You Attend a Lamaze Class?
The best time to attend in a childbirth class is 28-32 weeks of pregnancy. Therefore, it is best to register for the class when you are around 20-24 weeks of pregnancy. A typical Lamaze class will have 10-12 couples. Therefore, it is better to reserve your seats before the class fills up.
We also recommend you to enroll in a online pregnancy class before you attend in Lamaze class. Because, Lamaze class focuses only on delivery. However, a pregnancy class will teach how baby is developing in your womb, what changes you should expect in your body week by week, what you should do and what you should not do during your pregnancy.
4-) What Will You Learn in a Lamaze Class?
A typical childbirth class covers the signs of labor, how a normal labor and birth goes, techniques for dealing with pain, your partner’s tasks during labor and when you should call your doctor or midwife.
Lamaze classes focus more on relaxing the mind of women and preparing them solely for the delivery. You should expect to learn following from a Lamaze class:
- Natural labor and birth videos: you will see how a birth goes. You might expect to see some c-section birth videos as well. These will help you to understand what you will experience during birth.
- How to be active and informed participants during delivery: Birth is a progressive event. You must be aware of what to do and how you should inform your partner during delivery. You will learn this in the Lamaze class.
- Focused breathing techniques for labor: breathing is one of the critical things that will help you to have an easy delivery. You will be learning how to do breathing to give an easier birth.
- Relaxation techniques and strategies: labor pain is one of the biggest things that challenge women. With the help of relaxation techniques and strategies, you will learn how to overcome labor pain. You will learn techniques and strategies such as massage, walking, changing positions, hydrotherapy etc.
- Tips for encouraging your partner: you should attend to Lamaze class with your partner who will be with you during delivery. You will learn how you can encourage and support your partner when giving birth.
- Communication with hospital staff: you may need to communicate with hospital staff. Therefore, you will learn the value of professional support and how you should approach to the healthcare team during and after your labor.
- Overcoming complications: we all wish to have an easy going birth. However, we must be prepared for complications in case they may arise. You will learn how to deal with complications and possible medical interventions that might be needed in your Lamaze class.
- Reducing pain with meds: labor pain might need medical intervention. You will learn about epidurals and some other techniques that might be used during delivery to reduce your labor pain.
- First interaction with baby & breastfeeding: finally, you will cuddle your little one, but how? 🙂 You will learn how to interact with your baby after the delivery. You will learn the techniques for breastfeeding as well.
5-) How Can You Attend in a Lamaze Class?
You can visit Lamaze international’s website to locate nearest Lamaze class to your location. Note that, you may not find a Lamaze class close to your location. In this case, you can look for an online pregnancy training provider to learn the best tips of what to do during pregnancy and delivery.
When choosing a childbirth class make sure that the course will teach the signs of labor, normal progress of labor and birth, how to deal with labor pain, how your partner can help you during delivery and when you should call your doctor or midwife. It will be great if the pregnancy class will cover the basics of breastfeeding and how to take care of your newborn baby.
In addition to the benefits of getting your mindset ready for delivery, Lamaze class or childbirth classes will enable you to meet other expectant mothers. You will have the opportunity to meet prospective parents and you can get benefits from this community as well.
Lamaze class will help and prepare you to give a natural birth. While you will learn how to give a natural birth, you will have the knowledge of when you should ask for a medical intervention in case there might be complications. Review the content of Lamaze class before you enroll and make sure it covers the necessary curriculum. You should look for and register for a Lamaze class when you are around 20-24 weeks of pregnant. Because, it is best to attend a childbirth class when you are 28-32 weeks pregnant. Make sure the Lamaze class instructor is skilled to give the training. Try to interact with other expectant parents during the class and try to get the maximum benefits from your Lamaze class.
We wish you a easy and pleasant delivery 🙂