Even though the knowledge about the perinatal period, baby care and the labour itself can be partially found in different books, journals or websites, it also seems essential to consult specialists with in-depth expertise.
An ideal place for broadening one’s knowledge and practical skills is offered by antenatal (parent craft) classes. Attending such classes helps to dispel the doubts that are often harboured by parents-to-be, especially those who have never been in this role before. Besides the typical issues, such as pregnancy, delivery or perinatal period, the subjects discussed often concern a healthy lifestyle, physical activity during pregnancy, the menu or the role of partner in this special period for each woman.
What do we learn during antenatal (parent craft) classes?
The issues covered at antenatal (parent craft) classes include:
the physiological foundations for pregnancy development;
the information about the course of delivery and how to actively participate in it, about the possibilities of family delivery or labour in water immersion, as well as about how to increase one’s pain threshold and cope with it.
the postpartum period and methods of quick recovery after childbirth.
the necessary knowledge concerning newborn and infant care as well as information about breastfeeding.
Besides the typical issues, such as pregnancy, delivery or perinatal period, the subjects discussed often concern a healthy and more hygienic lifestyle. This includes the daily care, proper nutrition, supplementation, convenient and comfortable solutions for the mother-to-be (adequate clothes, cushions or pillows to facilitate sleep during advanced pregnancy, etc.). Great emphasis during antenatal classes is also placed on the role of physical activity during pregnancy. Pregnant women become familiar with a series of exercises that will facilitate their labour. Specialists also show the partners how to actively participate in the labour and support their women during pregnancy.
Do you know that …?
The first Antenatal School was established in 1957 by Prof. Włodzimierz Fijałkowski at the II Clinic of Obstetrics and Gynaecology of the Łódź Academy of Medicine.
Research shows that women attending antenatal (parent craft) classes are better at reading their bodies’ signals during labour and cooperate more efficiently with the midwife and the doctor. As a result, the labour is shorter by 2–4 hours and labour complications are less common, which makes the postpartum recovery much quicker.
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