Sign up for a maternity class near you, and learn what you need to know about having a baby.

Women's Health | 3 years ago

Which Maternity Classes Will You Go To?

Sign up for a maternity class near you, and learn what you need to know about having a baby.

When you’re getting ready to have a baby, you try to learn everything you can about pregnancy and motherhood. But no matter how much you research and read, there’s always more to learn – and the advice is always changing. How can you keep up? For one, you can go to a maternity class at the hospital where you’ll be delivering.

“Expectant families can attend classes and learn from experts about a variety of topics,” says Mandy Castor, FNP, a nurse practitioner at Atrium Health NorthEast Women’s Health & Obstetrics - Concord. “These classes can help families feel prepared for pregnancy, childbirth and even for life after the baby is born.”

Especially if you’re a first-time mom – but even if you’re not – the unknowns of labor and delivery can be a little unnerving. Luckily, Atrium Health offers plenty of classes and tours to help prepare you for everything to come.

And the best part? These classes are taught by the experts and other members of your hospital’s care team.

Classes You Won’t Want to Cut

Maternity classes can be very helpful for soon-to-be-parents and are held in group settings – so not only will you get to learn from experts, but you’ll also get to talk to expectant families just like yours.

Here are a few of the classes Castor recommends for growing families:

  • Prepared Parent Childbirth: This class helps prepare you for labor and delivery, and a tour of the maternity center is also included. Take this class once a week for 5 weeks, or knock it out in a single Saturday session.
  • Taking Care of Baby: This class teaches you everything you need to know about taking care of your newborn. Learn how you can best keep your baby happy and healthy from day one.
  • Infant Safety: You might be ready for your baby, but is your home? This class helps you prepare your home before your baby is born.
  • Infant Massage: You love massages, and so does your baby! This class teaches massage techniques that can help your baby relax, sleep and grow properly. Sounds nice, right? You can take this class starting when your baby is a newborn and all the way up to 12 months.
  • Breastfeeding: This class covers the basics of breastfeeding and nutrition for moms. Taught by a licensed lactation consultant, you’ll be better prepared to breastfeed your newborn.

Most maternity classes are open to everyone: moms, dads and other members of your support system. But Castor says some classes are exclusively for other members of your family – meaning no moms allowed!

  • Boot Camp for New Dads: This class is led by an experienced dad who helps prepare expectant dads. Dads will get to learn how to handle the challenges of parenthood, and they’ll also get to talk to and meet other expectant dads.
  • Sibling Tour (Big Brother/Big Sister Program): Offered for children between the ages of 3 and 10, this class teaches your older kids how to care for their new little brother or sister. Kids can also get a tour of the facility, but here’s the cutest part: They’re asked to bring a stuffed animal or doll to help them learn.

Needless to say, maternity classes offer a variety of benefits for expectant moms and their families. “You can learn a lot in these classes,” says Castor. “And that knowledge can take away some of the anxiety of labor and delivery and of being a new mom.”

Take the Grand Tour

What do I bring to the hospital?

Where do I go?

Is there Wi-Fi?

When it comes to labor and delivery, expectant parents have lots of questions. According to Castor, facility tours can help answer those questions and more. “The family can see where the mom and baby will be staying while at the hospital,” says Castor. “Taking a tour can help prevent some anxiety when moms go into labor.”

Starting in the lobby, a facility tour will walk you and your family through everything you need to know about the maternity center’s processes. You’ll learn where to register, see the delivery room, and even get to check out where you and your baby will be staying until you go home.

“This entire process is discussed in detail so the family feels comfortable and knows the different phases and rooms they’ll be in when the mom is admitted,” says Castor.

Invite your support system on the tour, too! They’ll learn where to park, where to wait, and, of course, where to find the gift shop.

Ready to Learn a Thing or Two?

Take a look at our list of classes, and sign up for one that works for you.

Some classes have a small fee, but many are available in bundles. And the sibling class and facility tour are both free! All classes are taught by certified educators and experts who want to make your experience wonderful.

Maternity classes are meant to be enjoyable and interactive. This means no tests and no pressure – just learning everything you can about being a new mom in a super fun environment.