What is a Doula ?

The word "doula" comes from the ancient Greek meaning "a woman who serves" and is now used to refer to a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother during pregnancy, birth and postpartum.
 
Studies have shown that when doulas attend birth, labors are shorter with fewer complications, babies are healthier and they breastfeed more easily.
 
A Birth Doula:
  • Provides continuous support throughout labour, birth, and early postpartum.
  • 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 
  • A birth doula certified by DONA International is designated by the initials CD(DONA).

Benefits of Having a Doula at Your Birth:

  • up to a 50% reduction in C-section rates
  • up to a 60% reduction in epidural requests
  • approximately 25% reduction in the length of labor
  • over 30% reduction in narcotic pain relief requests
  • Increased maternal satisfaction with birth experience
  • Increased breastfeeding success
  • Increased mother-baby bonding
  • Lower postpartum depression
 

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