Doulas have been around for a long time but only recently have they become a regular part of the discussion in birthing classes and among friends looking for a unique type of support during birth.
Did you have the support of a doula
when you gave birth?
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Considering Hiring a Doula?
Doulas are certified professionals who are well-trained in the birth process and how to support a woman during labor but they do not provide any medical or clinical care — they work with your doctor or midwife to support you in the birth you want.
According to DONA International a doula is “a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after birth.”
Having the support of a doula may result in a shorter labor with fewer complications. Studies suggest that babies are healthier at birth and they breastfeed more easily.
Interested in hiring a doula? Visit www.dona.org to search a database of certified doulas in your area. Plan to interview several doulas since you will want to establish a trusting, open relationship. The birth of a baby is an intimate and life changing event so take your time in deciding who you feel most comfortable with.
Doulas can help at other times too
For families looking for support after baby arrives, a postpartum doula can support a family through this transition. The doula provides emotional and practical support once the baby is home which has been shown to reduce postpartum mood disorders in new moms.
Antepartum doulas may provide support in the weeks and months prior to giving birth. This can be especially helpful for women who are on bed rest or who are experiencing extreme pregnancy symptoms. The support doulas provide during that time may include helping with other children at home, taking care of small household tasks, offering emotional aid, and helping the mother prepare through childbirth education.
Sleep doulas are available to care for a newborn at night so that a mother can get much-needed sleep.
For more information, visit www.dona.org