Childbirth is an experience that no one should endure alone. Whether you have the support of the child’s father, a family member or trusted friend, a doula is trained to provide emotional support, physical comfort, and non-clinical advice, so that the birthing person can have a positive experience before and after childbirth.
The benefits of having a doula is well documented and include a shorter labor, less stress and pain, and less interventions such as pain medications (epidural), use of forceps or vacuum-extractors, and cesareans.
A doula is not a medical professional such as a doctor, nurse or midwife. Thus, doulas do not give medical advice but may help explain the process of labor so that parent(s) can make informed decisions and prepare for childbirth. My doula services include:
1. No fee introductory meeting to understand the needs and expectations of the birthing person and any birth partners to see if we are a good match. This meeting should cover how you would like me to participate in the labor process, such as providing comfort measures, communicating with medical staff, and taking photos/videos. Please take a look at DONA’s Guide to Hiring Doulas. It’s important that pregnant persons are comfortable in choosing the right doula, so referrals are available upon request or check out the links to my backup doulas.
2. Preparation of a birth plan. This includes explaining the labor process and how to prepare for labor. It is important that doulas understand the needs and wishes of pregnant parents so that they can fully support and advocate for the laboring person during the entire birth process. In order to help you make informed decisions, please visit my Resources and Books page.
3. Consultation on comfort measures including but not limited to labor positions, massage and counter/acupressure points, relaxation techniques and breathing techniques. Recommendations and demonstration on how to ease discomfort at each stage of labor.
4. Participation in the labor process to support the laboring person and any birth partners.
5. Follow up postpartum visit, including referrals, if needed and requested.