They say it takes a village to raise a baby, but here at Bakersfield Birth Center, we believe it takes a village to support mamas as well. Whether you are pregnant for the first time or are pregnant for the fourth time in a new community, every mother needs a serious resource list! For a relatively small community, Bakersfield and the surrounding areas enjoy a strong network for women and families who believe in natural birthing, breastfeeding and attachment parenting philosophies.
Here is a list of local resources for pregnant, nursing and new mothers. Know of a helpful resource you don’t see listed here? Please contact the Bakersfield Birth Center and let us know so we can add it to our page. Similarly, if you are in the midst of a mothering dilemma, please give us a call or contact us online so we can be of assistance to you.
Mothering Resources for Bakersfield and the Surrounding Communities
Childbirth Education: Childbirth education is an amazing supplement to the information you are no doubt learning via books, online searches, your OB and/or your midwife. We highly recommend that you attend a childbirth education classes with your birthing partner, starting in month six or seven. Even better, look for early childbirth education classes – it’s never too soon to be as healthy as you can be.
From dietary recommendations and a list of risks/benefits associated with modern medical birth interventions, learning how to recognize and welcome your labor and birthing experience, to the basics of breastfeeding and newborn care, childbirth education courses help to prepare mothers and their partners for what’s ahead.
Our favorite local childbirth education courses are:
- Bradley Childbirth Course. Courses provided through Green Birth and are taught by a trained Provisional Bradley Instructor.
- Stacie Bingham. Classes are taught by Stacie Bingham LAMAZE Certified CCCE, Certified Doula (DONA) and LLL certified breastfeeding counselor.
Labor Support. If you choose the Bakersfield Birth Center and Justine Backhaus, LM, CPM, IBCLC as your midwife, you’ll receive unconditional and empowering support throughout pregnancy, labor and delivery. However, we realize that isn’t always an option. For women who choose to have their baby in a hospital, we highly recommend working with a Certified Doula or you can bring your Doula to the Birth Center!
Professional labor support services have been proven in countless clinical studies to reduce labor and delivery complications, minimize or eliminate the need for medical interventions, increase a woman’s chances of laboring naturally and in the positions in which she is the most comfortable and in improving breastfeeding success rates. Plus, Doulas are good for the mental and emotional well-being of the mama and her partner specifically if you are birthing in a hospital system.
The following certified doulas come highly recommended by the Bakersfield Birth Center.
- Mommy Matters, Emily Willett
- Green Birth, Meliza Flores
- Stacie Bingham
You can contact BBC to learn more about how a doula can help to support you during your pregnancy, labor and delivery – as well as during the postpartum phase – whether you choose to birth at home, at the birth center or in a hospital.
Breastfeeding Support: Once your baby is born, she or he will be happiest in what we refer to as “The Habitat, “ that is the heart-shaped area comprised by your chest, breasts, belly and two loving arms. It is here that your newborn baby has access to every single thing needed, including the most amazing and miraculous food source: mother’s milk.
Breastfeeding mothers often find they need a little support along the way. Sometimes that is in the form of a certified Lactation Consultant who can help you with the mechanical and “technical” aspects of breastfeeding, ensuring your baby has a good latch and to encourage healthy milk production; other times it’s to help you commiserate and commune with other mothers regarding the joys and the challenges of being a breastfeeding mother – or life with a baby – infant – toddler.
The following outlets can be invaluable sources of breastfeeding support and can also direct you to a certified lactation consultant or breastfeeding counselor near you.
Additional resources to help you learn about natural childbirth, birth centers and the advantages of having a midwife-assisted birth include: