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NHS Ante-natal classes

(23 Posts)
rooks14 Thu 16-Jun-11 12:32:28

I'm 33 weeks now, I've heard the NHS gives you one class? Is this for every district?

Nanny01 Thu 16-Jun-11 12:34:58

There is normally more than 1 class plus hospital visit. Have you done any nct ones or other independent classes. You need to urgently call your midwife for them as they are only offered to first time parents for certain slots.

rooks14 Thu 16-Jun-11 12:36:52

Oh right thanks smile Will ask her on friday! It's mine and my boyfriends first and we're 20 so really don't have a clue and would be very helpful!

Was reading someone talking about NCT ones but can't afford it!

lolajane2009 Thu 16-Jun-11 12:42:26

you might be too late to book them if they are available. i only just got on one at 23 weeks and only got the pain relief one and hospital visit as I should have booked at 20 weeks after 1st scan.

rooks14 Thu 16-Jun-11 13:08:39

That's really annoying, I would assume our age and the fact we clearly know nothing would mean they would give us some advice as to what's available

Cattleprod Thu 16-Jun-11 13:15:55

We get 4 sessions here. I'd push to make sure you get on a course if I were you. Most towns run several on different days, so even if you and DP have to take a couple of hours off work for 4 days it will be worth it as it's your first baby.
Failing that you could pay for private NCT classes - expensive at £180ish, but it's important that you both know what happens at birth etc.

vallinnapod Thu 16-Jun-11 14:41:36

We get 4, 2hr sessions on the NHS here (one lady in our first session was 37 weeks hmm) Plus an additional breastfeeding session. Quite good really.

We don't get a hospital tour with 'risk of infection' cited as the reason. Although the MW scoffed at this and said it was more likely a resource thing!

Tangle Thu 16-Jun-11 14:46:38

Depending on your personal circumstances the NCT do discounts of up to 90%. Worth calling them and asking, especially if the NHS ones are full.

Pudding2be Thu 16-Jun-11 16:46:39

I'm 29 weeks and when I spoke to my midwife at my 20 week check up she would give me the details to book at 28 weeks. I rang them today, and she asked me my due date (30 Aug). She said the august appointments aren't available to book yet and to call back when I'm about 34 weeks? Must be different in each area

glitternanny Thu 16-Jun-11 19:45:01

I booked my nhs ones last week at 16w, my midwife at my check up said to do it ASAP!

Dunno what the content is?

Or hospital tour?!

What's the diff between nhs and nct.

Tangle Thu 16-Jun-11 20:34:39

The NHS ones here covered things like:
- how do you know you're in labour?
- when to head into hospital
- what to expect when in hospital
- different types of pain relief available, along with pros and cons
- what to take to hospital with you
- what to expect when you leave hospital re. post natal care
- feeding options
- breathing techniques
We did have the chance to ask questions and discuss (especially around the pain relief aspects), but there were some areas where it was us being told what the hospital policy was on various aspects of birth.

The hospital tour was more or less exactly that - a chance to go and see around the maternity unit so that:
- you knew where day assessment unit was, if you needed it
- you'd seen the ante-natal ward and delivery rooms before you went into labour and had an idea of what to expect.

The NCT classes we went to covered many of the same areas, but they had more time so could go into more detail were able to have a lot more class input. They also spent a bit more time covering things like caring for a newborn. Individual experience seems to be very dependent on the course leader that you have - some are better than others, as in any walk of life. To the best of my knowledge the NCT aim to be factually correct, but they are independent of the NHS and so may have different views on some aspects of NHS policy. Whilst course leaders have to do a fairly significant amount of training they do not have to have a medical background - I think there were a few areas where we knew more than our course leader, just because it was something we were interested in and so had gone off and done a lot of reading. They are a great way to meet other families in your area that are expecting babies about the same time as you but there are plenty of other ways as well.

LoveBeingAbleToNamechange Thu 16-Jun-11 21:12:47

Please call your local childrens centre they normally do classes as well and may a have special session/course you can attend due to your age.

JimmyChoo17 Thu 16-Jun-11 23:11:26

Where I live I was offered 2 x two hour sessions ( both supposed to be crap) they used to offer 10 sessions. My midwife tells me now they have shrunk it to just 1 session too.

I thought about nct but decided against it in the end and I am glad I did (cost and they really were not for me! Although some people are lucky and have great midwives annd meet a good support group of fellow mums) I do however attend the free sessions the local nct group offers...would suggest finding yours (I joined free sessions via the local towns nct Facebook page)

Also look up sure start sessions these are usually better than nhs, free and 6 sessions. I couldn't get a place as they get booked up so early.

I have done aqua natal with a midwife and met good group of people and better advice there with the added benefit of exercise!

LoveBeingAbleToNamechange Fri 17-Jun-11 05:30:17

Op if you want to send me a pm telling me where you live we may be in the same area and I can give you some more spefic advice grin

ShazGJ Fri 17-Jun-11 05:49:12

We have 2 sessions here and would not let you book until 30 weeks. Found it really helpful, this is our first baby so really needed the advice. Found it covered everything I needed to know and felt more positive and relaxed about giving birth after them. Also got a tour at the end if the session around the new midwife birth centre I was very pleasantly surprised by the facilities nothing like what I expected from watching OBEM etc. Got enough info to be able to write my birth plan on my own, had a couple of questions that I thought about after the sessions and my own MW answered these at the check up. Overall, well worth it doing the NHS ones and glad I didn't pay for NCT.

JimmyChoo17 Fri 17-Jun-11 06:28:12

Ps yes we had hospital tour too, that was really good actually and got to ask lots of questions. I also was unable to book nhs classes until week 25.

I'm in bedfordshire, where r u?

mepsopie Mon 27-Jun-11 18:51:21

My friend is 36 weeks pregnant with twins. Has not had any classes not been offered any by midwife. I am 26 weeks and midwife has not mentioned anything about classes or hospital visits. I will ask at my next appointment but i get the impression it will be down to me to arrange things privately.

AppleyEverAfter Mon 27-Jun-11 19:39:06

I'm 27 weeks, midwife told me to book the class through the area's central midwife office. It's a one-day thing split into two sessions, one morning visit to the maternity ward and one class at the local library in the afternoon. We're going when I'll be 35 weeks.

I can recommend reading up a bit before you go, our library has some good books about parenting and pregnancy! Just make sure you get the up-to-date ones as procedures are changing all the time. Think I may invest in one to keep as I keep forgetting things! You could ask friends with kids if they have any books.

melliebobs Mon 27-Jun-11 20:13:52

i think it depends what PCT you are under. Just got my gumf through. THeres one class on how to stay fit during and after. Then the usual anti natel stuff is 2 2hour sessions. Theres a class just on breastfeeding. A class for ethnic minorities. A class for mums who allready have a kid and want a refresher. And a class for those expecting more than one. Then there are the aqua natal classes that the midwives run. Sounds like i'm lucky compared to some stories as that seems like a lot of stuff that's going on

H007 Mon 27-Jun-11 20:31:26

I haven't been offered anything... Not sure if I should have been yet or not? I'm kind of just going with the flow.

melliebobs Mon 27-Jun-11 21:13:19

mine all came in the info pack i got that had my letter for my booking in appintment

mepsopie Mon 27-Jun-11 21:15:20

Well I know my PCT is utterly useless. I work for them. I have just 'registered interest' in my local NCT class which runs for 8 weeks I think. Don't know if I have a place yet but it will set me back £174. I hope it's worth it if I even get a place that is.

Rootatoot Mon 27-Jun-11 21:27:12

I booked my NHS class after 20 week scan. Not due to attend for another 2 weeks, when I'll be 34 weeks. I need to ring about the BF class too which is separate. I'm not expecting a great deal from the NHS class, which is only a 2 hour session. I am going on hospital tour this saturday and our hospital runs them every weekend so ring up and ask. My MW gave me wrong info about them, so worth checking yourself. I have in fact been in hospital all day with high bp so have had a bit of an intro today, but still think worth going with DH so he knows where we'll be and I can see delivery rooms etc.

The other things is, as I didn't think the NHS class would cover what I want,.. I bought a couple of good books lately. See if you can get hold of some, or else check out library maybe? I got JuJu sundin's Birth Skills (which I haven't read yet but looks very practical and helpful) and Jenny Smith's Your Body, Your Baby, Your Birth, which is very quick and easy to read, and really helpful).

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