Published on February 24, 2020

Childbirth Classes Reduce Anxiety for First-time Parents

According to a recent study published in the International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology*, first-time mothers who took childbirth classes had fewer deliveries requiring interventions. The study caught the attention of Obstetrician/Gynecologist Brendan Conboy, M.D., of MidMichigan Physicians Group who serves on the medical staff at MidMichigan Medical Center – Alpena.

“I have felt that participation in classes can really help first-time parents better know what to expect and often help reduce some of the stress and anxiety that might accompany that first delivery,” said Dr. Conboy. “The study compared women who attended classes to those who had not; the percentage of normal, vaginal deliveries without incident or medical intervention was higher for those who had participated. Those outcomes support the case for ensuring classes are available to women and their partners, which is something we do at MidMichigan Health.”

MidMichigan Health offers three different classes designed to help educate soon-to-be parents: Pregnancy, Labor and Delivery; Infant Feeding and Safety; and Baby Care Boot Camp. Pregnancy, Labor and Delivery is a two-week course covering relaxation, breathing awareness, natural childbirth, epidurals and other anesthesia procedures, hospital practices, and the most up-to-date techniques for labor and delivery, including the unexpected and cesarean birth. Infant Feeding & Safety teaches both breastfeeding and bottle feeding techniques, as well as infant and child CPR, first aid and other safety tips. Baby Care Boot Camp is designed to bring birth parents, grandparents or adoptive parents quickly up to speed on the essentials of caring for a new baby. It is recommended to complete these classes sometime between 28-36 weeks of pregnancy. The classes are offered in Midland, Alpena, Mt. Pleasant, Clare and Gladwin

Course costs range from $30-$60 per couple per class, and there is a $30 discount for those who register for all three classes. Patients who are currently enrolled in Medicaid can attend free of charge by using their Medicaid number when completing the registration form.

Those interested in registering for the classes may visit www.midmichigan.org/childbirthed. Those interested in funding available for non-Medicaid patients may contact MidMichigan Health Line toll-free at (800) 999-3199.

*Gluck, et al, “The impact of childbirth education classes on delivery outcome,” International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Jan. 7, 2020, https://doi.org/10.1002/ijgo.13016.