Posted October 1, 2007 by admin in Ready or Not
 
 

What does a Doula do in labour?

A – A birth or labour Doula is a woman who attends the birthing family before, during, and just after the birth of a baby. She is also called a “birth assistant” or “labour support specialist”.A Birth Doula will draw on her experience and training to provide physical and emotional support during your labour. She will provide reassurance, encouragement and make suggestions to progress labour as well as assist with relaxation and other comfort techniques. She is present to advocate for you and your partner, who might otherwise feel overwhelmed by the powerful forces of labour, the systematized care in most hospitals, and the miracle of childbirth.In general a Doula provides:
  • explanations of medical procedures
  • emotional support
  • advice during pregnancy
  • exercise and physical suggestions to make pregnancy more comfortable
  • massage and other non-pharmacological pain relief measures
  • positioning suggestions during labor and birth
  • help supporting the partner so that they can love and encourage the labouring woman
  • avoidance of unnecessary interventions
  • help with breastfeeding preparation and beginnings
  • sometimes a written record of the birth

In General, women who have used a Doula are more satisfied with their birth experience, feel more confident in their ability to mother, bond faster with their newborn, are less likely to have post-partum depression, and are more likely to breastfeed. Studies have shown the following benefits of having a Doula present at birth:

  • 50% reduction in c-section rates
  • 25% shorter labour
  • 60% reduction in epidural requests

Photo:  Lucy Lime Studios


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