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What Does A Doula Do?

Posted on January 25th, 2013 by | 2 views
by Quinn Blaiklock

WHY USE A DOULA?


Women who are in labor are in a very vulnerable space physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. By having caring, knowledgeable people consistently and constantly available, laboring mothers feel safe, respected, and successful, leading to a more comfortable natural experience. No doubt about it, labor can be painful and exhausting, but it is also beautiful, rewarding, and supported.


A Doula will give you comfort, encouragement, and continuous reassurance. This partnership will include your partner, family, and/or labor support person(s). Your needs are individual and your Doula's care is based on your preferences and your individual circumstances.


WHAT BENEFITS DO WOMEN EXPERIENCE WITH HAVING A DOULA?


  • Tend to have shorter labors with fewer complications
  • Have an increase in positive feelings about the birth experience
  • Have reduced instances of abuse from negative self-esteem
  • Report increased success with breastfeeding
  • Demonstrate increased self-confidence, with child care and with herself
  • Have less post-partum depression
  • Are more successful with adapting to having a newborn in the family

WHAT DOES A DOULA DO?


  • Soft or firm physical contact
  • Firm pressure against back, hips, shoulders, sacrum
  • Vocalizing with you
  • Eye contact
  • Suggesting positions and changing those positions often
  • Including your partner as much as he or she is comfortable
  • Dancing
  • Offering compassionate care
  • Decreasing fear through self-empowerment

PARTNER SUPPORT


Usually partners want to support their ladies in labor, but are inexperienced, overwhelmed with emotions, or simply lacking in objectivity.  A Doula will include your partner as much as he or she would like to be included. Your partner can be with you, letting go of the need to be a medical expert.


A Doula will help you get the information you need to make informed decisions during the labor, birth, and immediate post-partum periods. She cannot make any decisions for you, and will not present myself as a medical expert, but will inform you as to the possible outcome of various procedures. Having a trained Doula will facilitate you and your partner to work together, enabling you to work as a loving unit.

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