Importance Of Prenatal Education: Empowering Parents For A Positive Birth Experience
Empowering Parents For A Positive Birth Experience : While pregnancy brings with it joy and fulfilment, it also brings with it a sense of anticipation and overwhelms the new set of expecting parents. Surrounded by family, friends and well-wishers, the couple gradually navigates their way towards parenthood amongst innumerable pregnancy-related advice and birth story experiences that often leave the expecting couple with an intensive information overload. With routine prenatal check-ups being brief and time-bound, along with a complex professional rapport that the couple is still trying to build with their pregnancy healthcare provider, the to-be parents are often left feeling confused and indecisive about their birthing options and impending choices to make. Add to this the availability of information with the click of a button. Doctor Google, coupled with a dash of social media that often provides half-baked information, leaves anxious parents with thoughts. Dr Vanshika Gupta Adukia, Lactation Expert, Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist and Founder of Therhappy, explains that this makes it essential for the couple to be empowered and tooled with the correct set of information for them to make an informed decision during the birthing process.
In The Case Of Childbirth
This not only includes the health and well-being of the birthing mother but also that of the child she is birthing. Empowered parents together can help make informed decisions for their family rather than succumbing to the societal pressure regarding the different methods of birthing, use of birthing interventions and medications, infant feeding practices, postpartum care and choices.
More Often Than Not
Parents may need to be adequately prepared or sufficiently informed about the possibilities to choose from, and this leaves them feeling insecure about being able to take care of their infant post-discharge from the hospital. While it is normal for parents to ease into the process of newborn care gradually, well-wishers often make this transition more challenging with their unsolicited advice, leaving the parents further intimated and overwhelmed.
Regarding The Milestone Experience Of Childbirth
- There are no rewinds or second attempts. Parents need to understand that every birth story is unique in its way, and their choices can vary depending on their situation. Often, couples are left psyched while anticipating their birthing journey, knowing about the experience of another family. Empowering expecting parents with the help of trained childbirth and pregnancy specialists can help them stay well-informed and understand their options.
- Birthing classes, breastfeeding seminars, and infant care sessions before birth can help couples understand what to expect during their own birthing and postpartum journey instead of being left second-guessing about facts vs myths. Being aware of potential birthing challenges, breastfeeding complications, alternate feeding options, and newborn health conditions can equip new parents with the power of being well-informed and updated rather than feeling intimidated. This also helps couples stay emotionally in control and reduces the risk of postpartum conflicts and blues.
- When the birthing experience is empowered and optimistic, its ripple effect spills over to the early parenting days to create positive feedback for the newly formed parents. While every parenting journey is filled with sets of highs and lows, a happy start can help the family navigate through the stricter days with a newborn better.
Postpartum support through lactation specialists and postpartum doulas can genuinely help families with scientifically backed information that eases the new set of parents rather than being left at the mercy of misinformed individuals around. Eventually, it is essential to remember that nobody can predict how any family’s birthing journey will play out. But, knowing what to expect, along with being aware of what their options are, can help families make calm, calculated & collective decisions that will help them feel in control and well-supported throughout the experience.