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Where can I find classes about caring for young babies?

22 replies

notmyfirst · 01/02/2017 14:56

Hi there,

I'm 18 weeks pregnant with my first child and I've realised I have no idea how to care for a new born. I'm also on a relatively low income - just enough not to get any benefits, but not enough to have lots of spare cash at the end of the month.

Does anyone know if there are any resources I can access or classes available on how to care for a newborn that don't charge a fortune? I can't afford the NCT prices and they've told me I can't qualify for a discount.

Thanks in advance - and apologies if this is the wrong place for this. I'm in West London if that helps.

OP posts:
ItsAllGoingToBeFine · 01/02/2017 15:00

It's not a class, but I found "The Baby Book" by Sears very useful. I had similar worries, had never babysat or known any young babies growing up.

If it's at all reassuring we weren't allowed to leave the hospital until we had demonstrated an ability to meet basic needs (feeding/nappies/cleaning)

Sparklyuggs · 01/02/2017 15:00

Some NHS trusts offer free antenatal classes, or maybe Sure Start? It could be worth asking another NCT teacher, mine says explicitly that she'd hate for someone to miss out solely based on finances.

Want2bSupermum · 01/02/2017 15:03

Another good book is what to expect the first year from the pregnancy series. Also ask on here when you aren't sure. Happy to help and I remember being in your shoes.

notmyfirst · 01/02/2017 15:09

Thank you guys, that's really helpful actually - it's all starting to feel real now I can feel the little one moving around inside me (the three month scan was awesome but it didn't feel real - oh look it's a picture of a baby sort of thing) so I'm starting to worry a bit!

I think I'll check out Sure Start and ask a different NCT class re: finances. Our NHS trust just gave us the NCT contact details and that was it.

Thanks again!

OP posts:
ItsAllGoingToBeFine · 01/02/2017 15:14

You could also ask your midwife is she has access to/ can recommend any resources?

notmyfirst · 01/02/2017 15:15

Good point re: the midwife. I was going by the PALS information and didn't think of asking the most obvious source. Thanks!

OP posts:
McBaby · 01/02/2017 15:24

Contact your local health visitors they may know of a course. We also had a weekly group session with the health visitors once the baby was here which covers quite a lot.

Sunshinegirl82 · 01/02/2017 15:37

Check with the hospital where you're booked in to deliver the baby. Ours did a one day course on the nhs, they aren't always great at advertising it though, I had to search it out.

Also check other providers, I did my classes with a retired midwife and it was much cheaper than nct.

Helbelle75 · 01/02/2017 15:41

Same as sunshine. We're with a midwife who runs classes. They've been fantastic and much cheaper.

MumBeth · 01/02/2017 16:10

Hi there,

I'm in exactly the same boat as you. Found it very frustrating that my local NHS only offers birthing classes (even asked my midwife!). But I discovered a book, The Essential First Year by Penelope Leach, to really help me with knowledge and my work colleague gifted me a book called How to be a Hip Mama without Losing Your Cool which helped me with confidence.

Hope that helps x

BernardsarenotalwaysSaints · 01/02/2017 16:18

Your local children's centre & or health visiting service will have information & will probably run classes too.

Starman16 · 01/02/2017 16:18

NCT offer reduced fees for those on low income/benefits. If I remember you pay 10% of the usual fee. Email the contact you've been given and explain your situation.

fassbendersmistress · 01/02/2017 16:28

I think most hospital maternity units run free classes.

For what it's worth I did NCT classes and can honestly say it taught me nothing about practically caring for a newborn. I was clueless but I suppose It gave me a sort of confidence that I had prepared in some way...and I made friends who I can reached out to and got advice and support from. Most of it will come naturally.

Is there a local Facebook mums group? You could see on there if there are any mums to be who'd like to meet up. Having a support network of other mums in the same boat is just as valuable as anything you'll learn in a class.

BertieBotts · 01/02/2017 16:45

The midwives will show you some things in hospital and you will get a book (or is it only on the NHS app now?) called birth to 5 which explains lots too.

Really there's not much you can get "wrong" with babies :) You can find info about breast and bottle feeding if you look for it and ask around. You'll definitely get leaflets etc if you ask and if you want to breastfeed you can start going to support groups before the baby is due. All of the different baby foods and milks have the ages they're suitable for written on the packaging.

You figure out what clothes to put on them by seeing what clothes they sell in the shops. They're mostly sized by age but it's a rough guide.

You will get leaflets with safety info on, the most important thing is safe sleep guidelines and car safety. The sleep guidelines are told to you about 100 times so you won't miss those - car seats can be bought from any shop which does baby stuff and the staff can show you how to put it into your car or on a dummy seat if you don't have your own car.

Nappies are self explanatory. Bathing can be a bit tricky but usually I think you get shown this in hospital - I don't think I did but it's a bit of a blur. Anyway we worked it out.

I reckon everything else is easily trial and error and you'll be absolutely fine! Good luck :)

BertieBotts · 01/02/2017 16:47

In fact, if you're going to do a course, I reckon a baby first aid course would probably be the most practical and useful one you could do, if you can find it.

savagehk · 01/02/2017 16:54

Re books, check if your local library has any. I also found the Sears book useful.

Helbelle75 · 01/02/2017 16:58

Mothercare do free local baby events as well and there are all kinds of baby events/ sales/ expos, just check your local Facebook groups. We have lots of selling groups for baby stuff.

dannydyerismydad · 01/02/2017 17:16

You say the NHS trust gave you information about NCT classes.

In some areas now NCT deliver classes paid for by NHS. It's not made very clear, so do double check this with your midwife.

The NHS funded NCT classes aren't as in depth as the paid for ones and you tend to get a larger crowd there so group activities are different, but they are a good starting point.

notmyfirst · 01/02/2017 17:54

Thank you for your help everybody, I have some good places to check out and I will definitely be seeing if I can find the books somewhere to read.

Thank you!

OP posts:
HelenaJustina · 01/02/2017 22:15

Just to reiterate, midwife, health visitor, children's centre... good luck, if you are planning ahead, sounds like you'll be great at this!

ScoobyDoosTinklyLaugh · 02/02/2017 09:02

Our children's centre do classes but I didn't go to them.

I was also clueless but you just need to feed, jiggle, cuddle, bathe and change nappies. It's all doable.

I just googled the shit out of everything as problems happened.

SnugglySnerd · 02/02/2017 09:10

Our maternity unit does ante natal classes and they showed us how to give baby DD a bath before we came home.
I did an NCT baby first aid course that was only £12.
Also found at baby groups that a lot of the discussion was about things like weaning, teething etc which was helpful as DD got a bit older.
Mothercare have videos online about things like changing nappies, safe sleeping, baths etc and just keep asking on here. Mumsnetters have an amazing combined knowledge!

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