What Is A Doula?

What is a doula?

Doula is the Greek word to mean women’s servant; however, the definition has come to be known as women who are experienced in child birth. She provides continuous physical and emotional support during and after labor.

What does a doula do?

I came across an article named what does a Doula Really Do? (Jessica Austin, Birth Doula) and she explained it fabulously, in real situations. I found myself nodding in agreement because as much as you hear that we provide… The truth is you may not know what a Doula really does.

  • A Doula will help track your birthing sensations, and help you to decide when to call your Midwife or go to the hospital.
  • Weather a home or hospital birth a Doula can arrive before your midwife, or transfer to the hospital.
  • We come when you call and remain by your side till you deliver and then stay afterwards
  • Doula’s, Dads and any other supports make really good teams, we all work together to provide a calm, comfortable, safe birth atmosphere. Catered to your needs
  • Doula’s wipe your brow and provide cool cloths (in fact I keep a basin of ice and water right by me, one nurse commented on the convenience of my water station)
  • Feeling at ease in the birth room is often much easier for dads if there is a doula present. (My husband praised my doula. I think at times he needed her more than I did.)
  •  We ensure that care is individual and focused on the mother’s needs.
  • Doulas help in education, and guidance to support the women’s’ decision as to where she wants to have her birth.
  • Doulas assist in helping in creating a birth vision/plan by providing education and information on the questions that the family has.
  • Doulas help advocate on behalf of the mother; providing her with information about what is going on with her and her body, medication, and achieving a positive outcome determined by her birth plan. If the birth does not go as planned, a doula can provide information on what is going on and encourage the couple to ask questions and take the time needed to make an informed decision about proposed interventions.
  •  Doulas provide continuous emotional, physical and informational support.
  • Doulas offer coping techniques such as breathing, guided-relaxation, position changes and massage.

As A Doula 

  • I come when you call
  • I provide a cold cloth
  • A calm reassuring smile
  • A wealth of knowledge
  • Someone to breath with you
  • Non-stop hip squeeze or back pressure and as Jessica Austin birth doula rightly said, it’s harder to sustain than it looks
  • Sit on the floor with you
  • Sit in the shower with you, holding a shower to your back.
  • Dance with you
  • Help you to ask those informed consent questions
  • Plus much, much more…

STATS During labor

  • 50% reduction in caesarean delivery
  • 25% shorter labor
  • 60% reduction in epidural requests
  • 30-40% reduction in forceps
  • 40% reduction in oxytocin
  • In a study, of women whom gave birth with just her partner there was a      rate of 22.5% caesarean, compared to 12.2 with a father doula team.

Questions to Ask A Doula:

The most important thing is to choose a doula that you are comfortable with and feel a connection too. Interviewing a doula in no way obligates you to hire them. Interview until you find a doula that best serves your needs.

  1. What training have you had?
  2. What services do you provide?
  3. What are your fees?
  4. Are you available for my due date?
  5. What made you become a doula?
  6. What is your philosophy regarding child birth?
  7. Would you be available to meet me before the birth to discuss my birth plan?
  8. What happens if for some reason you are not available at the time of my birth?

Questions taken from; is a Doula for mewww.americanpregnacy.org

What does a doula really do, Jessica Austin, http://www.birthtakesavillage.com/what-does-a-doula-do/

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