Why take classes in The Bradley Method® of natural childbirth?
Common Questions About The Bradley Method®
What is the difference between The Bradley Method® and other types of childbirth classes? The Bradley Method®is unique. Our classes stress the importance of Healthy Baby, Healthy Mother and Healthy Families. We attract families who are willing to take the responsibility needed for preparation and birth.
The Bradley Method® Classes:
1. Teach a natural childbirth method that works – Natural childbirth is an important goal since most people want to give their babies every possible advantage. Without the side effects of drugs given during labor and birth. The Bradley Method® classes teach families how to have natural births. The techniques are simple and effective. They are based on information about how the human body works during labor. Couples are taught how they can work with their bodies to reduce pain and make their labors more efficient. Of over 1,000,000 couples trained in The Bradley Method® nationwide, over 86% of them have had spontaneous, unmedicated vaginal births. This is a method that works!
2. Provide each couple a 130 page Student Workbook containing the class curriculum, study guides, vocabulary, information on pregnancy, labor, birth, postpartum, coaches/doula training, ways of handling pain in labor, pre-birth bonding, staying healthy and low risk, nutrition, protein counter, general assignments, birth plans, relaxation exercises, labor rehearsals, certificate of congratulations, pictures and more. The workbook provides standardization and insures couples that their teacher is teaching according to today’s standard of classes in The Bradley Method®.
3. Provide excellent coach/doula training – Coaches face some special challenges in labor. They need special training as well as the mother. This is not a spectator sport! We begin by teaching the coach how to help her during pregnancy to be aware of things that help her be as healthy and low risk as possible. What to expect in the natural course of a birth, how to avoid unnecessary pain in labor, how to support and be an advocate for this mother. Coaches learn a series of relaxation techniques and effective labor and birth positions. The classes provide relaxation practice and labor rehearsals. They are designed to educate and motivate coaches and make them a valuable part of the birth experience.
4. Offer comprehensive education – When you take a class in The Bradley Method® you don’t need most “extra” classes that are commonly offered. The Bradley Method® classes cover it all: nutrition, exercise, being more comfortable during pregnancy, the coaches role, introductory information about labor and birth, advanced techniques for labor and birth, complications, cesarean sections, postpartum care, breastfeeding (we do recommend La Leche League meetings) and caring for your new baby. Our classes cover a few topics that are rarely discussed in other classes like: how to reduce the need for an episiotomy and the likelihood of a tear, how to avoid needing a cesarean, how to make the best of it if a cesarean is necessary, and what the coach should do if the baby is accidentally born in the car.
5. Keep classes small enough for individual attention – The Bradley Method® classes average 3-6 (or 6-8) couples per class. Classes are kept small so that your instructor can get to know you and present a class that meets your needs. Small classes are also important so that you will have the space to do plenty of practice in class. Studies have shown that the Hawthorne effect (the effect of personal attention) makes for better learning and successful results.
6. Use only certified instructors – Certified Bradley Method™ instructors are trained professionals and experts in the field of childbirth education. Most of them have given birth naturally themselves or attended many unmedicated natural births. They have undergone an extensive training program with the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth™ and are required to complete continuing education requirements and reaffiliate every year.
7. Teach 12 weeks of classes, because it works. Couples who take a 12 week series are more likely to give birth naturally.
Lamaze is a nonprofit organization that promotes a natural, healthy and safe approach to pregnancy, childbirth and early parenting. Knowing that pregnancy and childbirth can be demanding on a woman’s body and mind, Lamaze serves as a resource for information about what to expect and what choices are available during the childbearing years.
Lamaze education and practices are based on the best, most current medical evidence available. They can help reduce the use of unnecessary interventions and improve overall outcomes for mothers and babies. Working closely with their families, health care providers and Lamaze educators, millions of pregnant women have achieved their desired childbirth outcomes using Lamaze practices.
The mission of Lamaze International is to promote, support and protect natural, safe and healthy birth through education and advocacy through the dedicated efforts of professional childbirth educators, providers and parents.
Forming the foundation of the organization are the Lamaze Healthy Birth Practices. These evidence-based practices, adapted from the World Health Organization, promote, protect and support natural, safe and healthy birth.
Below are additional resources that further describe who we are and what we do.
Birthing From Within
Stepping over the threshold
Each pregnancy, labor and birth is as individual as you are. Our classes provide space and time out of your busy lives to explore what YOU need as you step over the threshold into birth and parenting.
In preparation for your journey, we will explore?..
all aspects of childbirth – medical, cultural and spiritual and how that influences mother, partner and baby.
creating a supportive environment in the hospital or at home.
opening your body-mind before, during and after labor ? whether that includes birthing naturally, with an epidural or by cesarean birth. Opening your body is only part of birth. Your mind, soul and heart must open as well.
pain coping techniques – learn, integrate and practice techniques that will help you cope with the intensity of labor. Pain is an inevitable part of childbirth, yet much can be done to ease suffering.
ways to ask questions to make informed decisions that will help you navigate through labor and the challenges of parenthood.
uncovering, acknowledging, and taming fears ? empowering you to be fully present throughout your birth.
the unique role of partners in labor, postpartum and beyond. Special time is dedicated to addressing partners? needs and concerns, while providing practical ways to support their laboring partner.
preparing for postpartum emotional, physical and spiritual changes.
celebrating your initiation into parenthood!
Why choose a natural, easier birth using Hypnobabies? The benefits are many:
● Most of our moms use fewer drugs or no drugs, which means less risk of side effects for you and your baby, due to elimination of the Fear/Tension/Pain Syndrome, and using post-hypnotic suggestions.
● Most Hypno-mothers have shorter labors since there is less resistance of the birthing muscles when pain and fear are minimized or eliminated.
● Hypno-Moms generally have much more energy throughout first and second stage, due to your total relaxation throughout the birthing process.
● The birthing environment is much more calm and peaceful when you, the natural childbirth mother are comfortable, relaxed and confident.
● Breech and posterior babies can be turned using hypnosis.
● Blood pressure, heart rate, and temperature can be lowered and nausea, back and hip pain eliminated with hypnosis during pregnancy and labor.
● There are fewer interventions for failure to progress and therefore fewer complications during labor for our mothers and babies.
● The deep relaxation in Hypnobabies sessions has also helped many a nervous birth partner to enjoy their partner’s pregnancy and childbirth, and the skills that the Hypno-couple learns for relaxation and hypnosis will benefit them for the rest of their lives.
● As a Hypno-Mom, you are easily “deprogrammed” from the usual negativity of childbirth stories and scenarios you may have heard or read, by way of training in Hypnobabies classes and audio CDs which have positive messages and hypnotic suggestions. This automatically allows you to have a much more positive attitude and confidence in birthing. It is truly a gift that you are giving yourself, an amazingly easy way to enjoy your pregnancy more and actually look forward to your baby’s birth!
HypnoBirthing® – The Mongan Method is as much a philosophy as it is a technique. The concept of HypnoBirthing® is not new, but rather a “rebirth” of the philosophy of birthing as it existed thousands of years ago and as it was recaptured in the work of Dr. Grantly Dick-Read, an English obstetrician, who, in the 1920s, was one of the first to forward the concept of natural birthing. The method teaches you that, in the absence of fear and tension, or special medical circumstances, severe pain does not have to be an accompaniment of labor.
You will gain an understanding of how the birthing muscles work in perfect harmony–as they were designed to–when your body is sufficiently relaxed and you trust birth. You will learn how to achieve this kind of relaxation, free of the resistance that fear creates, and you will learn to use your natural birthing instincts for a calm, serene and comfortable birth.
When you have your baby with HypnoBirthing®, you will not be in a trance or a sleep. What you will experience is similar to the daydreaming, or focusing, that occurs when you are engrossed in a book or a movie or staring into a fire.
You will be conversant and in good spirits–totally relaxed, but fully in control. Awake throughout, you will be aware of your body’s surges and your baby’s progress; but because you will have trained yourself to reach complete
relaxation, you will be able to determine the degree and the manner in which you will feel the surges. You will experience birthing in an atmosphere of calm relaxation, free of the fear that prevents the muscles of your body from functioning as nature intended them to. In this calm state, your body’s natural relaxant, endorphins, replaces the stress hormones that constrict and cause pain.
Trained HypnoBirthing® educators are successfully teaching women and their birthing companions to trust birth and release all fear and limiting thoughts. HypnoBirthing® practitioners can be found in 34 countries throughout the world.
(I am now trained to help HypnoBirthing families through the birth process.)
The Childbirth Collective
Class Descriptions The Childbirth Collective
All About Doulas
This session answers specific questions about what birth and postpartum doulas do, what a typical doula package includes, and explains how doulas work with partners and care providers. Come get answers to all of your questions and have the opportunity to meet several Childbirth Collective doulas to see if doula care is right for you!
The Active Role of Your Baby in Birth
Your baby is not a passive part of labor and birth! Learn how mom and baby work together as a team to get this amazing work done. Discussion will include baby’s reflexes and movements, developmental abilities, fetal position, and how external influences can affect those inherent mechanisms. You’re not in this alone!
Hearing is believing. Mothers and their partners will tell you the story of their births and how they evaluate their experience compared to their other births or to their expectations. No two stories are the same and they include all types of birth experiences. This is always an inspirational evening for parents-to-be and doulas alike!
Choices & Planning
While we cannot always control how a woman’s birth proceeds, we can always control how we care for her. Come hear what choices you do have in birth and how best to communicate your wishes to your provider and other medical staff.
This is the class where women and their partners learn how to manage labor in a safe and rewarding way, so that baby’s birthday can be a happy memory. You will see how partners and labor companions are essential in the process and can take on a variety of roles depending on their own comfort level. Everyone will have the opportunity to practice various comfort measures.
Couples: Becoming a Family
You’ve been a twosome; what are the joys and challenges of becoming parents, forming a family, learning from each other, your baby, and the relationships between/among each of us? As your family changes, your relationship changes. Suzanne Swanson, a psychologist and therapist specializing in pregnancy, birth and family issues, speaks frankly about those changes and some ways you may work to navigate your own journey.
Medications & Interventions
Being informed about all of your options plays a huge role in feelings of empowerment when your birth is all said and done. Listen to how to use your BRAIN (Benefits, Risks, Alternatives, Intuition, Next/Nothing) as well as learn about some of the most common interventions and medications offered today. This class is not comprehensive, however, it will allow you to ask the questions you need to be fully informed.
The Natural Rhythm of Labor
This session will prepare you and your birth partner to not only recognize the stages of labor but also what can be done during each stage to bring comfort and support to the laboring mama. Trusting in the process, your body, and whatever rhythm you find is key to getting your groove on in labor. You are sure to gain confidence from attending this session!
Postpartum & Breastfeeding
Note: This topic may be presented together or split into two separate topics. Bringing home a new baby creates a huge change in the life of a family, whether this is your first, third, or sixth baby. How can you prepare for a smooth transition? What affects breastfeeding success and postpartum mental health? How can friends and relatives be involved without overwhelming you during this unique time? We’ll discuss sleep, priorities, nutrition, support, healing, and more.
Preparing Your Mind & Body for Birth
Women who are healthy and low risk have options when it comes to their labor and birth. We will explore aspects of your healthy pregnancy and provide specific ideas for staying low risk with good nutrition and appropriate exercise. We will also discuss the benefits of relaxation—both in preparation for labor and during the actual event. Several techniques will be introduced with time to practice and let go of stress.
The Spirituality of Birth
Explore the relationship between your personal values and your experience of pregnancy and childbirth. This session invites parents to consider how you can incorporate your view of the sacred into the birth of your baby, and the welcoming of your child. This is a completely nonsectarian discussion, and all are welcome.
Your Amazing Newborn
Learn how bonding and breastfeeding improves the physical and psychological health of both mother and baby. Learn about your baby’s amazing sensory and intellectual capacity before, during, and after birth, and how these are related to bonding, feeding, and other forms of nurture. Basic newborn care that supports this development may also be discussed.