Birth Boot Camp® Natural Childbirth Education Classes – Online and Instructor-

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Birth Boot Camp® Natural Childbirth Education Classes - Online and Instructor-

Choosing a provider: Understanding the medical and midwifery models of care

What is the difference between the midwifery and the medical model of care?

One of the first decisions that a woman makes, after her discovery of pregnancy, is her choice of care provider. In most countries, there are two basic care providers available- the obstetrician and the midwife. There are many factors that contribute to which provider will work best for your birth. A basic understanding of the common differences in their approach can help you make the best decision for your family.

Midwifery model of care-

Most midwives, whether working out of a hospital or attending home births, practice what is known as the “midwifery model of care.” The basic midwifery approach to birth and the pregnant woman tends to be more holistic. This means that they look at all factors which may contribute to the health and safety of the woman and her birth. Emotions, living situations, nutrition, and education should all be addressed by someone providing the midwifery model of care.

At the time of birth, this care provider will be aware of and trained to spot things that may go wrong, but will, overall, consider childbirth a natural process that frequently proceeds normally and safely.

Those trained in the midwifery model of care routinely refer out to an obstetrician when they observe that the pregnant woman needs to be cared for by someone with a deeper knowledge of pathology.

The Citizens for Midwifery note that,

“The application of this woman-centered model of care has been proven to reduce the incidence

of birth injury, trauma, and cesarean section.”

Medical model of care-

A practitioner using the medical model of care, as is common among western medical doctors, tends to approach the patient from a problem solving approach, searching for the defect or dysfunction and trying to fix it. Unlike the midwifery model of care that seeks to understand the whole person and prevent unnecessary intervention or surgery, things are viewed from a pathological model searching for the problem and a solution.

Obstetricians, who provide the bulk of medical care for birthing women in the United States of

America, frequently approach their patients and their pregnancy and birth from this angle.

Which is right for me?

When choosing your care provider, there are many factors to consider. One would be your own philosophy towards birth. Do you view birth as a normal life event or as a pathology or disease?

Assessing your own beliefs will help you choose a care provider that best matches your own needs.

Another thing to consider is your own health and wellbeing. If you or your pregnancy are high risk, for some reason, then choosing an obstetrician who approaches birth from the medical model of care and who is versed in your risk factors in particular may be the choice that works best for you and your family.

It is also important to realize that not all midwives use the midwifery model of care and not all obstetricians use the medical model of care. You may be able to find an OB who views birth as a normal, healthy life event and approaches it with minimal interventions. You will also find midwives who have come to view birth as dangerous and pathologic and who have high intervention and cesarean section rates in their practices. Interviewing your individual care provider and asking for experiences from other mothers, doulas, and your childbirth educator will help give you some idea of their practice and philosophy.

Take your time and research your care provider. Your birth and your baby are worth the effort!

References:

Citizens for Midwifery- “Midwives Model of Care” brochure

http://cfmidwifery.org/mmoc/brochure_text.aspx

CIMS- Coalition for Improving Maternity Services

http://www.motherfriendly.org/MFCI/

Three Basic Baby Carriers

Three Basic Baby Carriers From Newborn To Toddler

Babywearing is one of the seven B’s of attachment parenting. While Dr. Sears told us all the benefits of babywearing, he could have written a completely separate book on the different WAYS to wear your baby. Like most things with babies, I am of the mindset that baby carriers are largely transitional with the different stages of development. While one type of carrier is great for a newborn it might not be ideal for a toddler and visa-versa.  So how does a new mom, a first time mom, or even a first time babywearer pick the best baby carrier for their family’s needs? A friend and I have developed what we call the trifecta of baby carriers. These are the three carriers that we feel are great for any babywearer.

In my experience, most everybody starts with a stretchy wrap or carrier. It only makes sense, it is the cheapest of the trifecta and is available in most big box retail stores. Moby is the most widely known and available, though there are other comparable brands such as the Boba Wrap. Stretchy wraps and carriers are usually made out a stretchy jersey material. Wrap versions can be very versatile, but also carry a bit of learning curve. This is usually overcome by a pre wrapped stretchy carrier, such as the Baby K’tan.  Two problems I had with the stretchy carrier were:  I was unable to back wrap, due to it being unsafe, in addition to the fact that the weight limit was very low. By the time my son was about 15lbs my lower back was looking for a different solution. None the less, the stretchy wrap did serve its purpose very early on.

Another problem I had early on with my stretchy wrap was the length of time it took me to tie it in public. Not to mention the fact that it drug the nasty, dirty parking lot while I was trying to get it tied on outside of my car. With practice I got much quicker at this, but as I mentioned before there is a bit of learning curve. My solution to the learning curve was the ring sling. Ring slings are WONDERFUL to nurse in discreetly, as well as getting a baby in and out of the car quickly. The weight limit on ring slings can vary. The brand that I chose was SlingEze. I chose that one largely due to the padded shoulder and adjustable size. There are a variety of slings available some offer those options, others simply don’t.  The choice on those features are largely personal, but I knew when hanging 20lbs from one shoulder that I wanted a little bit of cushion.

Even though my sling offered a great cushioned shoulder, eventually even that was overcome by gravity. Hang a 20lb baby from your shoulder for a couple hours and you will understand. This, combined with my husband’s reluctance to participate in what I found to be a quite enjoyable and meaningful experience lead me to buy my first soft structured carrier.

The soft structured carriers or the dad carrier is the final rung of the trifecta of carriers. If dad will wear a backpack, he more than likely will wear a soft structured carrier. It is not recommended that you ever face your child forward on your front due to stress on their spine; back wearing was my solution for the curious toddler who wanted to see everything as I saw it. Soft structured carriers are the only carrier in the trifecta where back carries are recommended. If not for back carries my babywearing relationship might have ended at least a year before its prime.

Besides being dad and back carry friendly, soft structured carriers also have one of the broadest weight limits, most will start as early as newborn (some require extra parts for this) and go up to 45lbs. One of the main things to look for in a good carrier are a wide seat, you want to see the butt of the carrier stretch from knee to knee like the Boba 3G. Narrow seats put undue stress on the hips and are contraindicated by the International Hip Displasia Institute. Unfortunately, the soft structured carrier is also the most expensive carrier of the trifecta. 

There are a thousand different types of carriers, these are the top three basic carriers. Anything beyond this is what I, personally, consider intermediate or advanced baby wearing devices, in that their learning curves and prices increase, sometimes, exponentially. For more information on the trifecta or intermediate or advanced carriers find a local specialty store, visit them, AND shop with them. You will find a hidden wealth of knowledge in many cloth diaper stores, plus the time and man hours that are required to give you the personal attention you deserve. Another option is to search out local babywearing groups. Additional resources can be found nationwide at www.babywearinginternational.org or  www.thebabywearer.com

Credit: Valerie Cannon Photography

Tiffany Carra owns the Fort Worth Cloth Diaper Store, Simple Baby, and is a chapter leader for the Tarrant County Birth Network, a chapter of BirthNetwork National. For more information about attachment parenting and cloth diapering topics visit the Simple Baby Blog.

Birth Story – Kadence

One of our goals at Birth Boot Camp is to train couples in natural birth.  This tender birth story from one of our former students exemplifies everything we hope for our couples.  You will see a father go from scoffing the idea of natural birth and frightened of birth videos to being an amazing and integral part of a family birth experience.

This is truly what we seek to do as a company- improve the birth experience for the mother, her partner, and their baby. 

Enjoy this amazing birth story!

It was just about a year ago when we found out that we were pregnant.  I’d been a little too anxious with the first pregnancy test and despite assuring results up to 5 days sooner; the test still came back negative. A week later when Mother Nature still had not run her course, I tried again.  POSITIVE!

For reasons I don’t even completely know, I’ve always desired to have an un-medicated childbirth.  Granted, that wasn’t a conversation that really came up in our dating days, so when I told my husband this after we received the pregnancy news, he was a little unsupportive.  Okay, he might have even scoffed and said, ‘yeah, we’ll see how you feel when the time comes.’  Thankfully, I was with my mother-in-law at the time and she does a wonderful job trying to help me understand my husband.  She explained that his only up-front experience with childbirth had not been a very positive experience.  My husband has an adorable 6 year-old son (whom I love with my whole heart) from a previous relationship.  They were young and unprepared.  The mom is tiny and my (step) son’s head is rather large.  All of that resulted in a lot of pain and eventually a C-section.  This is what my husband had in his mind.

After explaining my desires a little bit more and reading a book that got us both on the same page, my husband jumped on the un-medicated band wagon with me!  We enrolled in a local Birth Boot Camp (instructed by none other than Donna herself!) so that we could both be educated.  Friday evenings were one of our favorite times.  It was great having time to be so intentional about understanding the birthing process.  What we both found most useful was the emphasis on the husband’s active role throughout the pregnancy, labor, delivery, and beyond.

What my husband found most uncomfortable was the birthing videos.  Seriously, he’d turn away, cover his face, catch glimpses of the video and be totally disgusted.  Uh….he was supposed to be my #1 support during the delivery; how were we going to make sure this happened?!  As classes went on, the whole birthing process became a little less…disgusting…to him.  However, to this day, he still will say he found the videos revolting.  Bless his heart.  However, having been exposed to un-medicated births via those videos let him know a little bit more about what to expect on D-Day (Delivery day).

When the day arrived (I would say finally but she came a few days early despite me being convinced she would come late – so perhaps unexpectedly arrived would be more accurate), we were as ready as we were going to be.  My husband had his affirmations written down for me, lots of lyrics and scripture saved, and an entire playlist put together for during labor.  I think we got through a few songs before she came much quicker than anticipated!  My husband was my #1 support that day as I had hoped he would be.  He was calm, encouraging, supportive and calm.  Did I mention calm?  When meeting my husband, calm probably wouldn’t be one of the words used to describe him.  Yet, thanks to a lot of prayer, the classes and conversation (and, yes, even the videos), he knew what I needed that day to have a positive birthing experience.  It was an incredible day all together.

I had a friend there with us taking pictures of the whole experience.  When talking to her a few days later, she told me the first thing she told her husband after watching our daughter’s birth was that she was super impressed (and even a little shocked) with how well my husband responded throughout the process.  Even my midwife commended him for his support.  While he might not have been the one to catch our daughter, he did manage to peak and even caught a glimpse of Kadence coming into the world – with her arm raised high by her head.  Really, Kadence?!  But to think he might have missed that if not for everything we had learned ahead of time.  I’m so incredibly thankful for our experience and how prepared we felt going into all of it.  My husband was so enthralled with how alert our daughter was immediately upon entering the world.  Really, he’s just enthralled with her in general.  I’m so thankful for Donna, Birth Boot Camp, our fellow Birth Boot Campers and the healthy arrival of our tiny newest addition.  We couldn’t have asked for anything more; we are incredibly blessed.

What are people saying about Birth Boot Camp online classes?


“The class on actual labor and pushing was a favorite. It helped me know what labor looked like.”

“We LOVED the birth films! They especially helped my husband. We enjoyed class on vocalizing labor, that really helped.”

“Birth Boot Camp told me I could do it. It taught me how to be verbal and make low groan sounds. I practiced that. I realized how much my husband needed to be prepared. It prepared him for transition and my doubt. I learned that it was normal to be super hot, super cold and vomit during transition. My husband didn’t freak out.”

“I definitely want to do a natural birth again. We both really really liked classes. We enjoyed it and felt prepared. We did the relaxation and moaned through labor.”

“Overall loved program. Wouldn’t have made it through without it. I tell everybody about it.”

“I have raved to friends about Birth Boot Camp.  Baby #2’s birth was a completely different experience than #1, because I was educated this time.”

“I don’t have enough good things to say. I tell everyone about it. 5 stars all the way!”

“Loved breastfeeding DVD!”

“Class was wonderful. We chose online because of schedules. Birth videos were helpful for my husband.”

“I am very thankful for this class.”

“Great!”

“Absolutely loved classes. My husband loved it and said it held his attention.”

“I had a beautiful home water birth assisted by my amazing midwife, two doulas and warrior husband. Looking back at the birth pictures, I can see that my husband was working as hard as I was…deep breathing and moaning right along with me. Birth Boot Camp taught him how to do all this, how to be calm, and what to expect during labor. I overheard my mom say to my midwife, “Wow, she makes labor look easy.” My birth team also told us this was one of the most beautiful births they had ever been a part of. Thank you to Birth Boot Camp for the fantastic preparation.”

“Could not have made it without Birth Boot Camp.”

“Really helpful and great!”

“Great experience and investment!”

“Liked online option.”

Are you looking for a fabulous online birth class?  You CAN have an amazing birth, too!  Sign up today!

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