Pregnancy and Childbirth Education & Support
Planning and preparing for the birth of a baby is a special time in a family’s life. It is also a time of great change. To help you prepare for the transition from pregnancy to parenting, Bronson offers a wide variety of classes and programs throughout the year as well as classes designed specifically for moms-to be, first-time dads, siblings and grandparents.
More women choose the Bronson BirthPlace for the delivery of their newborn than any other hospital is southwest or south central Michigan. Our team’s goal is to help you to be as prepared as possible for when your new baby arrives, so you feel confident and ready to take on the world as a parent and growing family.
Nitrous-oxide Pain Medicine
At the Bronson BirthPlace, we offer Nitrous-oxide pain medicine to our patients. This colorless, almost tasteless gas is inhaled through a mask to decrease the strength of pain. As the patient, you will give yourself this pain medicine so you're in control of your pain relief. Learn more.
A Guide for Pregnancy, Birth and Parenting
You're pregnant and have lots of questions about your pregnancy, delivery, breastfeeding and caring for your new baby. When you select Bronson for your baby's delivery, your OB/GYN provider will give you "Your Childbirth Experience" guidebook on pregnancy, birth and parenting. This guidebook will help answer many of your questions. For your convenience, the guidebook is available, online, in English and Spanish.
Patient Education for New Parents and Caregivers
If you’re a new parent or caregiver of babies born at the Bronson BirthPlace, here are some great resources.
The Newborn Channel
You’ll find information on the Newborn Channel on how to prepare for your baby, breastfeeding, child safety, circumcision, development and so much more. All video transcripts are available in English and Spanish.
Family Centered Educational Classes
Whether you are a first-time-parent, a grandparent or hoping to babysit or provide childcare, we have a class for you. To learn the basics or take part in an open discussion on how childcare has changed over the years, you can find a class or support group perfect for your needs at Bronson. After all, we are a leader in the care of pregnant women and newborn babies.
We offer fee-based classes in Battle Creek, Kalamazoo and South Haven. Unless otherwise noted, many classes encourage moms-to-be to bring the father or another support member along to class with you. Medicare is available for most classes, otherwise a nominal fee is charged. Financial assistance may be available to qualified applicants.
Prepare your family for the birth of your child, from pregnancy to labor and delivery. Topics covered include relaxation and breathing techniques, pain relief and skills to cope with discomfort during pregnancy and childbirth, and the postpartum experience. Vaginal and C-section births are covered. In this class you will also receive a tour of the Bronson BirthPlace in Battle Creek or Kalamazoo.
Just the Basics*
This class is a shortened version of the Prepared Childbirth class. It includes a take-home booklet portion and a tour of the Bronson BirthPlace.
Learn what to expect with your newborn in the first few hours and days after birth, feeding, bathing, diapering and soothing. You will also learn how to recognize the signs of illness, learn CPR and choking rescue technique. We recommend expectant parents take this class with the Baby Safety class.
Expectant parents and caregivers will learn important aspects of baby safety including safe sleep, making the home safe and car seat safety. You will also gain awareness about unsafe sleep practices and environments that could put your baby at risk. This includes how to talk with other family and care providers about safe sleep, and the ins-and-outs of car seat safety from infancy and beyond. We recommend this class be taken along with Baby Care class.
Car Seat Installation
Watch this video to see how to properly install a car seat so your baby's first ride home will be a safe one.
Grandparents Baby Care
This is the same class as Baby Care, but grandparents are also encouraged to attend. Grandparents sign up under the "Grandparents Baby Care" class.
Grandparents Baby Safety
This is the same class as Baby Safety, but grandparents are also encouraged to attend. Grandparents sign up under the "Grandparents Baby Safety" class.
In this class, moms-to-be learn the basics and benefits of breastfeeding, as well as tips for the first days in the hospital, establishing a milk supply, medications, nutrition, problem-solving and returning to work.
Infant massage has many benefits for both babies and parents/caregivers, including reducing stress, improving bonding, regulating sleep and aiding in digestion. This class is for parents or primary caregivers and their babies who are at least two weeks old and haven't started crawling.
Boot Camp for New Dads
A class designed specifically for first-time dads. In this male-only class, new dads will learn from experienced fathers who have supported moms-to-be through birth and the time that follows. They will build confidence and prepare for the joys of fatherhood.
Online Prenatal Education
Your time is very important to you. If you are unable to attend childbirth education classes through Bronson, you can participate in a web-based program instead. The class includes a booklet and covers childbirth, breastfeeding and childcare, and is available in English and Spanish. For information call (269) 341-7521.
Starting Together Siblings Class
Having a new baby in the house can require a lot of changes for siblings. In this class designed specifically for children between ages 3 and 10, siblings will learn about having a new baby at home. They will learn how to hold a baby safely, how to help mom and dad care for the baby, where mom will have the baby and more. Class includes a child-friendly tour of the Bronson BirthPlace.
Perinatal Emotional Support Group*
Pregnancy, birth and caring for a newborn takes a lot of hard work and can often come with a wide range of challenging emotions. If you are having difficulty, you're not alone. This free support group meets the second and fourth Wednesday of every month.
Designed by a pediatrician, this two-day class teaches preteens, in grades 6-8, how to be safe sitters. They will learn the importance of their role, stressing that they are responsible for the life, health and safety of the children in their care. They will learn about childcare, behavior management, handling medical emergencies, hands-on basic life-saving techniques, the business of baby-sitting, safety, security, child development and age-appropriate activities.
Network with other parents and share the joys and trials of caring for a new baby. This weekly support group for parents and caregivers is also a play group for infants up to one-year-old.
Network with other parents and share the joys and trials of caring for a toddler. This weekly support group for parents and caregivers is also a play group for toddlers, from one to four years old.
*These classes are only offered in Kalamazoo. Learn more about these classes, registration and location information.