Having a baby is an amazing experience, and it can be the most empowering experience of your life.
If you are looking to have somebody support you through this journey, a Doula can be just what you are looking for! Doulas can provide prenatal care, information, guidance and support, labour and birth support, as well as postnatal care.
Hiring a Doula to provide continuous one on one support for you and your partner (if you have one), can help you achieve your desired birthing experience.
A Doula can support you in any birth environment you choose.
A Doula can support a vaginal birth or a birth by ceaserean.
By hiring a Doula a mother ensures:
She has continuous 1:1 support physically, emotionally, spiritually
Her choices are respected and supported
She is surrounded by caring and nurturing energy at all times
She has a reduced risk of unnecessary interventions
She has a skilled set of hands 'holding the space for her'
What is a Doula and what do they do?
A Doula is a support person that you can hire to support you and your partner with your birthing experience, in any birth environment you choose.
A doula provides you with the continuity of care and support at all times.
A doula provides un-biased, non-medical support and information to mothers and their partners before, during, and after the birth of their baby.
A doula believes in the mother and her ability to follow her instincts, allowing her to birth her baby the way she feels comfortable and without fear, in a safe and supportive environment.
A doula helps you work through your choices for preparing for birth.
A doula can help you work through any anxiety or fears you may have regarding childbirth or becoming a parent.
A doula provides support for birth either at home, or in the hospital.
A doula will come to you in labour at the point when you feel you need the support the most. This may be early on into the labour or once labour has already established, it is completely your decision when you want your doula to attend!
A doula can help you feel more comfortable in labour by creating a safe space, providing you with physical and emotional support, and non-medical pain relief (e.g hot packs, massage, counter-pressure etc), and provide suggestions for changing positions or moving etc
A doula can hold the space for you in the birthing room, provide physical support or just hold your hand, whatever you need when you need it.
What doesn't a Doula do?
A doula does not perform any medical or clinical duties.
A doula does not replace your partner, they can support your partner, or can step in when your partner may need a break. This ensures the mother has continuous support during labour and birth.
Benefits of having a trained Doula
According to research undertaken in the US, Klaus, Kennel and Klaus, authors of Mothering the Mother, "How a Doula Can Help You Have a Shorter, Easier and Healthier Birth", have identified the benefits of having a doula at your birth:
50% reduction in caesarean rate
25% shorter labour
60% reduction in epidural requests
40% reduction in oxytocin use
30% reduction in analgesia use
40% reduction in forceps delivery
Greater maternal satisfaction
Better mother-infant interaction
Decreased incidence of postpartum depression