This post is sponsored by BehaVR, however all thoughts are our own!
What makes motherhood so special (and so complicated!) Is that each of us has our own path, from conception to pregnancy, labor and delivery to bedtime and raising our babies. Until now, there has never been a form of parenting and mental health capable of meeting each mother’s specific needs. This is where NurtureVR comes in. This is a revolutionary new pregnancy and puerperium support system that uses virtual reality. You heard right, this is a headset system that will walk you through everything from breastfeeding positions to meditations for stress relief. Welcome in the future!
Our Rookie Mom Squad is very honored to be able to try NurtureVR so we can share with all of you how awesome it is! Below, we cover everything you should know about NurtureVR, from how and why it was created, to our own favorite courses.
What is NurtureVR?
Before we get into everything we love about NurtureVR, I think you need to understand what it really is. NurtureVR exists because BehaVR, their parent company, saw a void in maternal care. An astounding 15-21% of pregnant and postpartum women suffer from perinatal mood and anxiety disorder (PMAD) with symptoms such as depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, postpartum stress, and psychosis. When women experience PMADs or high prenatal stress, it can lead to long-term physical or behavioral health problems for both mother and baby. There is a deep need that we in our society talk more about it and prepare new mothers with the resources to help them do this.
According to BehaVR, their mission is “to reshape the way people access and experience care, to improve health on a large scale,” and with NurtureVR they are doing just that for mothers. They have partnered with Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian and gathered an amazing team of nurses, doctors, midwives and mothers to work together and create this truly revolutionary product. This means you are getting the most of the best information there is, and you basically have a wealth of knowledge from the best nurses and midwives right at your fingertips that you would otherwise not be able to access.
If you could have the best caregivers and doctors cared for you and your baby, you would go for it, right? Well, with NurtureVR, you actually have the opportunity to learn from these people and bring their knowledge to your maternity journey.
This is why the virtual reality aspect is so important
Aside from the fact that the knowledge of so many incredible people is wrapped up in one resource, this is what really sets it apart from other maternal health courses, the virtual reality aspect. You’re probably wondering what makes virtual reality so amazing in healthcare, and if you’re anything like me you’re probably also thinking, “Well, that’s a cool experience for sure, but why is it necessary?” Well, let me Tell you what I’ve learned since introducing NurtureVR!
First of all, you can use NurtureVR right from the comfort of your home. That said, if you don’t want to get out of your pajamas or snuggle up in your favorite spot on the couch during classes, you can. Because of this, it can be used by mommies on the bed rest, which is great!
More important than convenience, VR has the unique neurological power to catalyze a change of perspective. This makes it easier for you to learn and connect to the content displayed. Because of this unique power, Virtual Reality is being used for some really incredible things in the future of healthcare!
The NurtureVR modules cover so many topics, including extremely important topics like mother-baby bonding, partner intimacy, stress management, and hormonal and emotional changes. These issues require you to be comfortable and open-minded, and feeling comfortable while you are pregnant can be a real agony. Plus, with VR you are in control of your own health to make things at your own pace and at your discretion.
Everything about the courses
Once you’ve put your headset on, you’ll have access to all of NurtureVR’s amazing self-directed content. We all thought it might be difficult to set up and use, but it’s actually a breeze and walks you through everything.
We recommend starting things by adjusting the settings for different things like your baby’s skin tone, your surroundings, and the way you hold your baby while breastfeeding. So you can really immerse yourself in the experience.
As soon as you have made all the preparations, the modules go week after week through the third trimester and through 8 weeks after the birth.
Here are some of the topics covered in the modules:
Your baby week after week
If you love the fruit and vegetable size comparisons of your baby’s size week in and week out, you will love these modules! It gives you a clear picture of what your baby is likely to be up to and how it is growing and changing.
Stress management & relaxation techniques
There is a mindfulness exercise every week. You can choose which voice you want to hear and your surroundings (like a waterfall, forest or beach) and you will be guided through breathing and meditation exercises. It’s an amazing way to make sure that you stop and take some time for yourself each week.
Breastfeeding isn’t always as natural for us as we’d like it to be, so I think it’s great that NurtureVR covers this issue with you before your baby is born to give you an idea of what to look forward to.
Breathing Techniques During Labor
Breathing is so important during labor and knowing the right techniques can bring you a lot of relief. You can go through these techniques with NurtureVR just like you would in a antenatal class, but what’s special is that you can take NurtureVR with you to the hospital! You can escape to your preferred peaceful environment and practice breathing during labor.
It is very important to make sure that you are properly filled for your new role as a mom, especially if you are breastfeeding. Our Rookie Mom Squad noted that this isn’t always something the doctor goes right through, so this is definitely information that will fill the void for many moms!
Why skin against skin is good for you and your baby
There are a few postpartum modules on NurtureVR that will help you bond with your baby, but we love this one in particular. Skin-to-skin is so important to mothers and babies, and it can be done after your hospital stay too!
This is just a glimpse of the many things you can learn and experience with NurtureVR. As you can see, there is both practical information you would get from a birthing course and therapeutic information on how to relieve stress during labor and delivery. This program will be there for you when you need it most, through the anxieties of pregnancy and the transition of adding a new member to your family!
That’s what our rookie mom squad says about it
We’ve had two amazing but incredibly different moms from our Rookie Mom Squad using NurtureVR. Both women had the opportunity to use NurtureVR both during their pregnancies and in the fourth trimester! Below are their thoughts.
Amber is a mother of 6 by birth and adoption, so yes, she had been through it all before! This time was a little different, however, and left her looking for something that could help her through pregnancy and childbed while at the same time leading a busy lifestyle with a house full of older children. She had previously taken the classic classes of sitting in a room full of other expectant mothers, watching video clips and listening to a lecture, but this time she wanted something more intimate.
Her main goal was to use NurtureVR to manage her anxiety caused by the aging of this pregnancy, a history of preeclampsia, and the fact that her husband was unable to keep appointments. Fortunately, NurtureVR turned out to be an amazing resource for this, allowing her to escape the chaos for meditation (while still at home with her other kids!).
However, what really surprised her was how much she learned from the NurtureVR modules! This shows that no matter how experienced a mother is, there is always something new to learn.
Kait is the mother of 2 cute boys and used NurtureVR until the end of her second pregnancy. Having experienced postpartum depression after giving birth to her first son, she knows the importance of having a network of support for new mothers. She wanted to try NurtureVR to see if it could be part of her support system during her second pregnancy.
Kait immediately fell in love with the VR aspect. It’s pretty amazing to be easily transported to another location and it really allows you to dive deep into the stress relief modules. If a toddler is running around keeping her busy, it serves as her reminder to give herself some time each week to see where she is with her pregnancy.
She can hardly wait to continue using NurtureVR after giving birth and is looking forward to the tips and ideas about bonding!
The future of NurtureVR
While we were overjoyed to try this amazing program, we are even more excited about the very important role it will play in the future of maternal health education.
We mentioned above that one of the revolutionary things about NurtureVR is the way that knowledge from the best of the best is made available in one place, through a headset that can be taken anywhere. This enables NurtureVR to make a huge impact on underserved communities and help fill the gap in maternal health education. This is exactly why they partnered with maternal health organizations like Save Moms and Cherished Mom.
So how can you get your hands on NurtureVR?
I really can’t believe how overwhelmed we are with NurtureVR. Every expectant and postpartum mother deserves the incredible support she offers. Our rookie mom squad really didn’t know what we were getting into when we first decided to try this because there is nothing like it, but now we can’t recommend it anymore. The fact that you can sit on the couch in the comfort of your home in your favorite spot and learn more about your body, baby, and mental health is a turning point.
If you’re interested in learning more about NurtureVR and getting your hands on one of your own, follow this link on their website and use code ROOKIEMOMS for $ 50 off!