Why Should You Take Childbirth Classes?
Most hospitals and birthing centers offer programs to give expectant parents an overview of everything from signs that you're in labor to the nitty-gritty on vaginal and c-section deliveries. These classes are great for first-timers. "If you know what to expect, you'll be less fearful, less anxious, and better prepared to make decisions," says Sheri Bayles, RN, a childbirth educator in New York City. In addition to taking you through the labor process, a class will teach you about different medication options and how to develop the best birth plan for you. No matter what you view as the "ideal" delivery, you'll learn that there are factors beyond your control -- like how fast your labor progresses -- that can change even the most detailed birth plan. So it's best to be fully informed about the labor process and to know all your options.