Q. What is a Doula?
A. The word Doula comes from the Ancient Greeks
and is now used to refer to a Woman who helps other women.
- Recognizes birth as a key life experience that will be remembered
- Assists the woman and her partner in preparing for and carrying out their
plans for the birth.
- Provides emotional support, physical comfort measures, objective viewpoint,
and assistance to the woman in getting information she needs to make good
- Facilitates communication between the laboring woman, her partner and
clinical care providers.
- Perceives her role as one who nurtures and protects the woman's memory
of her birth experience.
Q. What exactly does a Doula do?
A. A Doula stay's by the side of a laboring mom from the
moment she feels she needs her. A Doula gives laboring techniques to the
birthing mom and her partner to help ease pain and / or to help progress
labor. She informs the parents of the pro's and con's of medical interventions
if intervention is recommended be the doctor. A Doula helps the mom to
nurse the baby after birth and making sure the baby is feeding properly.
A Doula visits the family at home after the birth to answer any questions
regarding newborn care, nursing, postpartum care, etc. a Doula helps to
preserve to memory of the birth for the family.
Q. I have my partner attending the birth. Why do I need a Doula?
A. A Doula does not take the place of a partner who is able to be present
for the birth. Instead she helps the partner by giving suggestions which
might be useful at different stages of labor. She also fills in for the
partner should he or she have to leave the birthing mothers side for and
reason. She is an advocate for the birthing mother to help her achieve
her birth plan goals.
Q. I am giving birth at the hospital, why do I need a Doula?
A. Hospital births need Doula's even more than home births. Hospital
staffs get very busy and do not have much time to spend helping every
birthing mother. Nurse often are running in and out of rooms which means
the birthing mother is not getting the constant care and support she often
feels she needs.
Q. What is a birth plan?
A. A birth plan is a list of laboring options that you wish to have happen
for the birth. Such as, no epidural wanted or no pain meds unless necessary.
Basically it's the do's and don'ts list for a birth that gets passed along
to the hospital staff. The Doula does everything in her power to help
the mom and partner achieve their birth plan goals.
Q. What does a Doula bring to the hospital which might help me in labor?
A. Doula's bags are full of useful tools. Birthing balls, heat / cool
compresses, massage tools, lotions, music of different styles and goodies
to eat for partner and mom, if she is allowed. These are just a sample
of things that a Doula may have with her.
Q. Are Doulas affordable?
A. Absolutely! Every birthing mother can make arrangements for payment.
Depending on your situation service can be provided on a sliding scale.
Q. How far along should I be before contacting a Doula?
A. The sooner the better, but generally anywhere from 6 - 9 months pregnant.
The more time you have to spend getting to know your Doula prior to birth,
the better for both the mom and Doula.