Doula

31% decrease in use of Pitocin
28% decrease in risk of having a C-Section
12% increase in spontaneous vaginal birth
34% decrease in dissatisfaction with birth experience

Evidence Based Birth, 2013

Why choose a doula?

Why should you choose to have a doula? An Ancient Greek word meaning “woman’s servant”, having a doula present for labor and birth has been shown to create a more positive birth experience, resulting in lower risk of c-sections and the use of pain medication.

Having a baby is a natural part of life, and having a doula present for this event allows you the opportunity to keep the event as natural as possible. Through the use of aromatherapy, hydrotherapy, massage, and other forms of natural pain management, women can experience childbirth confidently and with strength.

Be sure to check out the Resources page for additional information on the benefits of having a doula.

Interviewing a Doula

The interview process in hiring a doula allows you, the parents, to get to know her better. Questions and concerns can be brought up right from the start, keeping your relationship open and honest for the duration of your time together.

Some questions to consider asking:

  •  What is your previous birth experience as a doula?
  •  What did your training consist of?
  •  How do you view your role as the support at the birth?
  •  What are your fees, and are there any extra costs I should be aware of?
  •  What are all the services you offer?
  •  How do you feel about __________? (You can ask anything in regards to your fears or concerns such as pain and pain management, natural approach, laboring positions, etc.)

Doulas and Partners

Doulas do not replace the husband or partner in a woman’s childbirth experience. Instead, she is there to support both of you. Providing information and communications between the mother, partner, and medical professionals who may be present, is just one of the ways a doula can support both parents.

A doula can be especially helpful in support of the husband (and mother) should he want to “catch” the baby. She’s also available to help before pushing, during active labor, if he needs to rest a little, get something to eat, use the bathroom, etc. while still providing support to the mother.

Some instances also occur in which the partner is unable to attend the birth, or will be a little later than planned (such as deployment, or other work related travel). The doula is available to help the mother until father can arrive and they can both support her.

Interestingly, couples who have a doula present also report partners staying more involved with their partners, both during labor and postpartum.

A doula complements the partner’s role; after all, they are both there to help the mother give birth confidently and safely.

Things to Consider

There are several important factors to consider when choosing a doula. Parents, especially the mother, should consider what kind of support they are looking for from their doula. Your beliefs, your ideal birth experience, and your philosophy should all be taken into consideration when looking into hiring a doula. Other things to consider are your budget, looking into the doulas training and seeking referrals, and whether there are experiences in birth you want to avoid. Be sure to ask your doula about her experience in these realms as well, and compare your views.