*WHO, WHAT and HOW of a Doula…
A PRE-NATAL Doula:
~ Recognizes birth as a key experience the mother will remember all her life
~ Provides continuous physical, emotional and spiritual nurturing throughout your pregnancy and labor
~ Understands the physiology of birth and the emotional needs of a woman in labor
~ Assists the woman in preparing for and carrying out her plans for birth
~ Stays with the woman throughout the labor
~ Provides emotional support, physical comfort measures and an objective viewpoint, as well as helping the woman get the information she needs to make informed decisions
~ Facilitates communication between the laboring woman, her partner and her clinical care providers
~ Perceives her role as nurturing and protecting the woman’s memory of the birth experience
~ Allows the woman’s partner to participate at his/her comfort level
* Having an experienced, calm presence on your birth journey is incredibly reassuring,
often translating to less medical interventions, fewer complications, shorter labors, positive birth experiences, healthier babies and babies breastfeed more easily.
A POST-NATAL Doula:
~ Offers education, companionship, nurturing and nonjudgmental support during the postnatal fourth trimester
~ Assists with newborn care, family adjustment, meal preparation and light household tidying
~ Offers evidence-based information on infant breastfeeding, emotional and physical recovery from birth, infant soothing and coping skills for new parents and makes appropriate referrals when necessary
*Research evidence shows that the quality services of a postnatal doula can
ease the transition that comes with the addition of a baby to a family,
improve parental satisfaction and reduce the risk of mood disorders.
*WHEN to meet your doula?
~ We encourage you to meet your doula as soon as you know you are pregnant. It is wonderful to build a relationship with you and your family to better understand your pregnancy needs.
~ When you feel your first contraction, contact your doula to inform her of your state of being. This helps the doula know you are very close to beginning labor and she can be ready for you anytime.
~ Of course, contact your doula for any questions, tea time, a stroll, beach time, share meals, etc. at any time.