doula \DOO-luh\, noun:
A woman who assists during childbirth labor and provides support to the mother, her child and the family after childbirth.
Doula derives from Greek doula, “servant-woman, slave,” akin to hierodule.
A birth doula is someone who is there to support you throughout pregnancy and be there through labor and delivery. A doula will help you have the birth that you want, help you get the information you need to make educated decisions throughout pregnancy and labor/delivery, and will also help your husband or partner help you in the most effective way he can. A doula can help in SO many ways. Research has shown that having a doula present at birth can decrease cesareans by 50%, decrease length of labor by 25%, decrease pitocin use by 40%, decrease requests for pain meds by 30%, decrease forceps deliveries by 40%, decrease epidural requests by 60%, increase overall birthing satisfaction, promote longer breastfeeding, encourage parent/baby bonding, and help partners participate with confidence*. If you are thinking about hiring a doula, don’t think anymore about it. Just do it. You will be so glad you did – it is money very well spent!
Some Non-Measurable Benefits of hiring a doula:
- Someone who really has been there, done that before – just knowing this can reduce stress for mom and dad.
- Help you if you’re scared
- Help you and your hubby if your hubby is scared
- Help you let go, and simply let your body guide you through the childbirth.
- Can be the only person who can keep everyone’s nerves calm and cool during childbirth. She can be integral in facilitating communication between you, your support team and providers.
- Can provide massage, teach relaxation techniques, ideas for different labor positions, breathing help and so on prior to and during labor and delivery, as well as teach massage and helping techniques to your partner prior to and during labor.
- Can help provide any emotional or physical support you need if you’re dealing with a difficult pregnancy or situation.
- She may attend you in your home during labor, and through delivery when birth is planned with an out-of-hospital healthcare provider
- If you will be at home, a doula can get in contact with the hospital if needed, as well as drive you there.
- Can answer your questions about newborn baby care
- Can answer your questions about your post-pregnancy body and emotions
- Can answer questions about breastfeeding and latching on. Don’t miss that opportunity!
- Can also offer you with guidance when it comes to rest, exercise and offer support.