What is a Doula?

What is a Doula?

A Doula is a non-medical birth companion: often described as a birth and labour coach. We are here to provide emotional support, physical comfort, and information to help you feel comfortable and informed about your birth. We have many tricks up our sleeves to help you cope through the sensations of contractions and birth. Each Doula is as unique and inspiring as the births that she tends. The one thing that we all have in common is that we adore the birthing process. Doulas are the educators for a natural birth experience. We want mothers to embrace their birth fully without fear.

Why a Doula?

            A Doula can enhance the birth experience by offering physical comfort during labour as well as emotional support to the mother and partner. This is an exciting time for both parents, and they need to focus their energy on bringing a new baby into their life. The Doula may provide small actions to help with labour that the couple may not think of: such as heating/cooling a cloth for the face or preparing light snacks and water (even though this is a very momentous moment, both parents need fluids and food more than ever!) If the mother’s partner starts to get tired and needs a break, then they can leave the room for a nap or food without worrying whether the mother is in good hands or not. As well, the Doula is a loving figure who encourages excitement about your birth and life after birth. Her passion for childbirth is a refreshing take on what having a baby is all about.

Studies show that women who have had a Doula present during their labour had the following benefits:

  • 51% decreased caesarean rate
  • 36% decreased use of pain medication
  • 34% less likely to rate their childbirth experience negatively
  • 31% decreased use of synthetic oxytocin to speed up labour
  • Facilitate mother-baby bonding and breastfeeding

Sources:
http://www.dona.org/publications/position_paper_birth.php
• Mothering the Mother, by Marshall H. Klaus, John H. Kennell, and Phyllis H. Klaus
• Continuous Support for Women During Childbirth (Cochrane Review). Hodnett, E.d., Gates, S., Hofmeyr, G.J., Sakala, C. The Cochrane Library, Issue 1, 2004.
• A comparison of intermittent and continuous support during labor: a meta-analysis. Scott, K.D., Berkowitz, G., Klaus, M. American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology. 1999 May. 180(5): 1054-9.