What To Expect
What To Expect
My role is one of nonintervention and is non-medical. I am with you to provide physical comfort, emotional support, and advocacy. Doulas do not make decisions for you or perform tasks such as blood pressure checks, fetal monitoring, or vaginal exams. I will help you get the information necessary to make an informed decision. I will also remind you if there is a change in your birth ideals that you have shared with us. I will discuss your concerns with you and suggest options, but you and your partner will speak on your behalf to the clinical staff.
Doulas can help cut back on time spent in labor, reduce a mom's and/or coach's anxiety, lower the rate of medical interventions (including C-sections) and improve mother-baby bonding post-birth.
Throughout labor, you might discover that you need or want to change positions to get comfortable or to help labor progress. A birth doula will know a myriad of positions you can try. Birth doulas can also provide a comforting touch by giving massages, applying counter pressure, leading breathing techniques and other comforting touches to help you relax. When a doula is able to provide physical support to a mom, they can often help a baby that is mispositioned find its way through the pelvis and into their mother’s waiting arms.
Simply easing some of the emotional stress that accompanies the birth of a new baby can reduce the need for interventions like cesareans, epidurals, and labor-inducing measures. It’s also nice to have someone who can help create a space for the family to relax, especially when emotions and hormones are running high. Whether you are having a natural birth or are using medication to help with the pain, everyone can benefit from additional emotional support from a nurturing and empowering source.
Regardless of who is in the delivery room with you—partner, friend, family member, etc—doulas are there to provide support them as well. This allows your support person to be as involved in the birthing process as they’d like to be. Having both physical and emotional support available makes a big difference for everyone involved.
Now that you understand some of the support-related benefits of hiring a birth doula, you can decide if having a doula is right for you.
Credit: International Doula Institute