Q: What is a Doula?
A: A Doula is a professional who provides physical and emotional support to families through all stages of pregnancy, labor, childbirth, and the postpartum period. The overall goal is to support and encourage a safe, nurturing and joyful process of childbirth for the mom and family, however you see fit!
Q: What are the benefits of having a Doula?
A: Doula’s are statistically proven to improve outcomes:
- 34% decrease in the risk of being dissatisfied with the birth experience
- 31% decrease in the use of Pitocin (drug used to mimic labor contractions)
- 28% decrease in the risk of C-sections
- 14% decrease in the risk of newborns being admitted to a special care nursery or NICU
- 12% increase in the likelihood of spontaneous vaginal birth
- 9% decrease in the use of any medications for pain relief
It has also been shown that moms who hire Doulas have shorter labors, better bonding with baby and fewer interventions during labor.
Q: Who needs a Doula?:
A: The following is a list of families who could benefit from using a Doula:
- If you had a difficult first labor, and are apprehensive about the next.
- If your partner is squeamish about different aspects of birth.
- If your partner is enthusiastic and wants to be highly involved in the birth experience.
- If you had previous c-section(s) and are planning to repeat.
- If your partner wants to support you in the best way possible and enhance this intimate experience.
- If you had a previous c-section and are planning a VBAC.
- If you are planning a home birth or hospital birth under the care of a midwife or an OBGYN.
- If you are planning to have natural birth with no medications OR if you are planning on having an epidural.
As you can see, a Doula is helpful to all births and all families from all walks of life.
Q: I am having a C-section, do I really need a Doula?
A: ABSOLUTELY! I even feel as though the moms with c-sections should have a Doula present more than the moms who deliver vaginally. When dealing with a c-section not only will things be hectic for the mom but also the dad or support person present. A Doula’s main role is to provide SUPPORT. And when I say support, this is physical, emotional, and informational support. I firmly believe that EVERY woman deserves these types of support regardless of the type of birth she is planning to have. Hospitals are coming around to the idea of a Doula and some will even allow them in the OR with mom.
Q: I want an epidural, can I still hire a Doula?
A: Of course! If you want an all natural quiet home birth, I’ll be there. If you want a water birth at a birthing center with all your family, I’ll be there. If you want all the medications and all of the help while in the hospital, I’ll be there. If you have a scheduled C-section, I’ll be there. No matter what the perfect birth looks like to YOU, I will be there every step of the way, coaching you, helping you, taking it one surge at a time.
Q: I want my husband in the room helping me, will you replace him?
A: ABSOLUTELY NOT! My job is not to replace anyone but to add value to you both. Mom knows her body and birth, dad knows mom and a Doula knows both. I can teach dad techniques to help you if you wish, during labor.
Q: I plan to go naturally with no pain medications, but what if I change my mind during labor?
A: I am completely open to helping you however you see fit. I will not judge and will provide support and compassion to each and every mom. Birth is hard, let me help make it more manageable for you.
Q: What if you are unable to make it to my birth?
A: I have quite a few babysitters on stand by for my children so I can make myself available to you. This is also why I have limited myself to just a few moms a month, at this point, to make sure I am 100% available to you while I am on call for your labor. I do not plan to miss anyone’s birth that I am assigned to, but as we all know, life happens. In the event I am unable to attend your birth due to my OWN circumstances, I will issue a refund. More of this is outlined in my contract which we can review at our meetings.
Q: When can I hire a Doula?
A: Anytime! I have some moms who know as soon as they have a due date that they want to secure my services. I also have moms who come to me at 28+ weeks along, looking to book me as well. I am very open to working with anyone who realizes they are worthy of the help I can offer. I firmly believe every mother should get the opportunity to experience birth with a certified Doula.
sources: www.doulatraining.net, www.baby-chick.com, www.northeastiowadoulas.com, www.evidencebasedbirth.com.