what is a doula

What is a Doula?
A doula supports a woman and her partner during pregnancy, birth, and the early weeks of parenting,
with reassurance, practical assistance, and information. A doula is someone there by your side during your labor, besides your partner. She can encourage you, remain objective, assist you with practical knowledge on comfort measures for labor, such as massage,breathing techniques,relaxation and suggestions for positioning. A doula can provide information when you have questions, and can help you communicate most effectively with your medical caregivers.

A doula does not act as a nurse or midwife, so she does not provide clinical care such as doing examinations on you or checking your baby's heartbeat. The support a doula provides fits together with, but does not replace,the care of your doctor, midwife, or nurses. Doulas do not make decisions for you, or speak for you. A doula supports you by providing information and explanations you may want about your choices, but it's always you who decides what's best for you. A doula will support you through the decisions you make and will respect your decisions.

Postpartum Care
A doula also provides postpartum care when requested by helping with care of a newborn, breastfeeding and postparttum care.

Doulas make a difference!
The research has shown that having a doula at your birth can make a real difference to the outcome. The risk of an emergency Cesarean is reduced, as well as the chances of other interventions happening like episiotomy and assisted delivery. How a mother interacts with her baby, her satisfaction with her birth and her relationship with her partner are all rated significantly higher with women who have had a doula compared to those who have not!