Why Hire a Birth Doula?
Why Hire a Postpartum Doula?
We've all seen the statistics of how having a doula can make labor and birth easier. When a doula is present, women are:
28% less likely to have a cesarean
31% less likely to use oxytocin to speed up labor
34% less likely to rate their childbirth experience negatively
9% less likely to use pain medication
Hodnett ED, Gates S. Hofmeyr G J, Sakala C, Weston J. Continuous support for women during childbirth. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2011, Issue 2.
Basically, doulas help women feel confident in their ability to birth the way they wish, educate them on choices and help them feel safe and comforted which allows a women's body to labor without many of the common interventions.
A doula will help ease the transition to parenthood through hands-on care, support and education for mom and the new family reassuring and encouraging them to enjoy this precious time.
Mothering the Mother
Bringing a baby into the world is hard work! New mamas need time to recover. A doula enables a new mom to rest and bond with her new little one. A good meal, a nap or maybe a shower is what you're craving. A postpartum doula can watch baby while you have a little time for yourself.
What I Do
recognize birth as a unique experience that the mother will remember all her life
educate the mother and her partner on labor, birth and possible interventions
assist the mother and her partner in preparing for and carrying out their plans for birth
stay by the side of the laboring mother providing emotional support and physical comfort measures throughout the entire labor
suggest positions and techniques to help facilitate labor progress
facilitate communication between the laboring mother, her partner, and clinical care providers
provide an objective viewpoint and assist the mother and her partner in getting the information they need to make decisions
be a reminder of a birth plan if there is a departure
assist with the first feeding if needed
help the new family get settled after birth
An Extra Pair of Hands
Having a new baby means lots of new chores and the old ones don't go away either. Having a doula around to help out with things like laundry, meal prep or changing a diaper can be just what a new mom needs. And if it's your second or third baby, a doula can help entertain the older children while you're busy with the baby or help them adjust to another sibling.
Babies don't come with instruction books and every baby is different. Having your first baby requires learning many new skills such as diapering, bathing, feeding and the all important soothing and getting baby to sleep. Even a second or third baby may involve a learning curve for new parents as well. Having a doula who is trained and has experience with lots of babies and their care can make all the difference.
What I Don't Do
tell a woman and her partner the "best" way to have their baby
anything medical like take blood pressure or temperature, perform vaginal exams, recommend medications or procedures
make decisions for the pregnant woman and her partner
speak to medical staff on the woman's behalf
take the place of the laboring woman's partner
As great as a doula is, we don't know everything and we don't diagnose or treat, but we do have knowledge of many available resources or services that could help if the need arises. It's peace of mind that you aren't in this new world of parenting alone.