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Paula Kashtan

Q&A: Childbirth Class Curriculum?

How do I know if I’m taking a good childbirth class? What should I be learning?

No matter what style of class you choose, check the instructor’s certification and credentials in advance. Look for a class with three to ten students, and go for one that meets for short sessions over several weeks — you’ll learn and retain more than from one marathon session. Find reviews of specific classes from local parents on lilaguide.com.

Before you sign up, find out what topics the class will cover. These should include instruction on comfort, support, relaxation and positioning for labor, epidurals and other pain meds, possible complications and interventions during delivery, and birth plan options. Also look for postpartum topics like breastfeeding, parenting and your own recovery. Good luck!