Beware of the headline
Research on antenatal classes does not necessarily mean what the headlines say.
“Antenatal classes are pointless, says study”

This headline stopped me in my tracks. A veteran of a pleasant series of antenatal classes myself, I have always recommended that pregnant women and their partners do attend the classes. While nothing can quite prepare you mentally for the shock of becoming a parent, knowing something of what to expect did alleviate my anxiety somewhat.

A little investigation revealed that the quoted study by the Karolinska Institute in Sweden actually compare two sets of antenatal classes with each other. The intrinsic value of the classes could not really be called into question on the basis of this information. 

For the record, the natural birth technique classes were found to make no difference (compared to ordinary antenatal classes) when it came to number of Caesareans, instrumental deliveries and satisfaction with the childbirth experience. In both groups, the epidural rate was 52%, and the Caesarean rate was also virtually the same: 20% for the natural birth technique group and 21,5% for the other group.

But this doesn’t discount the overall benefits of attending antenatal classes of some sort. They’re helpful, say most of the Parent24 bloggers commenting on Mom & Moody’s post about antenatal classes.

To find antenatal classes in your area, visit the Parent24 antenatal class directory.

Did you attend antenatal classes? Were they useful to you?

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