You have more birth options than you may realize. Take time to explore them.
In recent years, there’s been a big shift in birth options in Nashville, part of a trend that’s happening in many parts of the country. Hospitals have introduced new choices, like larger birthing suites and nitrous oxide for pain relief, and in 2015, Baby and Company opened its doors offering a new option for families: birth center delivery with Vanderbilt faculty nurse-midwives. If you’re pregnant in Nashville, you have more options than ever, which is AWESOME. But it takes time to navigate all of these choices, when you’re also busy figuring out how your insurance works, which vitamins you should take, and whether it’s normal to be peeing all the time. (It is.)
Although we are super excited and proud to have recently welcomed our 1,000th baby born at the center, Baby and Company (watch our Instagram stories to track our progress!), Baby and Company also now offers hospital birth with our team of midwives or with our obstetrician, Dr. Richard Thigpen. This means we can provide a full set of options to everyone who enrolls in our prenatal program – birth center delivery, midwifery care in the hospital, or physician care in the hospital.
People often start prenatal care without putting a lot of thought into their birth plan. It’s natural to think about options for labor and birth as you get closer to actually giving birth, and to get started with a prenatal care in an OB practice that is familiar or was recommended by your insurance provider. However, since most practices only offer birthing at one site, your options may turn out to be limited. Different birth settings and providers have different approaches to care and different options available. This means when you start your prenatal care, unless you’ve done a bunch of research already, you may be opting out of choices you haven’t even explored yet.
At Baby and Company, a full range of options are available and the prenatal program is specifically designed to help you learn about pregnancy and birth and explore those options – including where to give birth, different pain relief methods, and choices like water birth and doulas. Clients get free comprehensive childbirth education (as well as free wellness classes and workshops), a handbook full of tools and education to help navigate care options, and lengthy prenatal appointments to ask questions and build a customized plan for pregnancy, labor, birth, and postpartum care.
Clients also get an amazing, family-friendly community. In addition to classes, there are options for group visits and a full calendar of events and partner workshops like Meet-the-Doula night and Infant CPR. There’s also an incredible 6-week program for new moms, Thrive, designed to build community and help people make a healthy, confident transition to motherhood with a circle of support.
Pregnancy and new parenthood can be isolating experiences, and Baby and Company’s model of care is designed to make it easy to connect, make friends, or get help navigating the ups and downs of pregnancy and parenthood from other parents or from the center’s team of physicians, nurse-midwives, nurses, educators, health coaches, and specialists.
At Baby and Company, our goal is for everyone to make good, informed choices that are right for them and to have plenty of support during one of the most amazing but challenging phases of life. There’s not one option that’s right for everyone, but in a city like Nashville with many great options, there’s something that’s the right fit for each unique family.
Interested in learning more about birth center and hospital options in Nashville? Baby and Company offers a 1-hour class called Birth Choices, designed to help people understand the differences and similarities between birth center and hospital birth and prepare to make a decision that’s right for them. It’s offered throughout the month and is free to clients and non-clients.