What is a Doula?

A Doula is:

“a trained professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to a mother before, during and shortly after childbirth to help her achieve the healthiest, most satisfying experience possible.” 
DONA International

A birth doula provides a listening ear for the emotional process of pregnancy, how she feelsphysical comfort suggestions during pregnancy and labor and informational support for both the laboring mom and her partner. The doula is knowledgeable about the entire birth process, possesses skills to help a laboring mom cope with the physical experience and emotions of labor and understands the importance of this event in the life of the couple. The doula will provide support for mom and baby by helping mom formulate questions, gather information, and discuss the options available with the medical staff. The doula will not perform clinical tasks, and will never make decisions on behalf of a woman. A Doula will always respect that it is up to the mother to make the informed choice that is best for her. Most importantly, the doula uses her skills to complement those of the woman’s partner and medical providers, helping to ensure a satisfying birth memory.

What is a Doula and Why are they so Beneficial?  (video by www.healthyhappychild.com)

  • Shorter labors and fewer complications
  • Reduction of one’s negative feelings about one’s childbirth
  • Strengthens the bond with, and appreciation for, one’s partner
  • Less need for Pitocin (a labor-inducing drug; synthetic oxytocin), forceps or vacuum extraction
  • Fewer requests for pain medication & epidurals, as well as the incidence of cesareans
  • Increases rates of breastfeeding at 6 weeks postpartum
  • Increases one’s own self-esteem, and feelings of capability

 

Stephanie is one of the warmest, most nurturing people I know. She wants to feed you, she wants to support you, she just can’t help it! From making her bone broth or lamb stew, to listening when things get tough, to being a veritable warrior for what’s right – you can’t take the nurturer out of Stephanie. I’m too old to have more kids, but I can’t imagine a more positive and pro-active person to have by my side.

Nurturing is the perfect word