What is a Doula
The word "doula" comes from the ancient Greek meaning "a woman who serves." A doula is a trained professional who provides physical, emotional and informational support to the mother as well as her partner before, during and just after birth.
Benefits of a Doula
Numerous clinical studies have found that a doula’s presence at birth:
tends to result in shorter labors with fewer complications
reduces negative feelings about one’s childbirth experience
reduces the need for pitocin (a labor-inducing drug), forceps or vacuum extraction
reduces the requests for pain medication and epidurals, as well as the incidence of cesareans.
As a Doula, I Offer
I believe for every mom/baby/family, there is a doula that "fits". It's very important for me (as it should be for you) to have a good match. I want your birth experience to be as supported, comforting & full of joy for you and your family as possible. For this reason, our first consultation is more like a meet and greet. It gives us a chance to get to know each other.
2 Prenatal Visits
Getting to know my clients is such a blessing. I like to use this time for you to share with me your goals, hopes, and any concerns. During our first prenatal visit we get to know each other better, talk about past birth experiences if any, I listen to your expectations and dreams for this birth. Share birth education classes and options available. We may put together a birth plan and possibly talk about a few labor coping techniques. During our second prenatal, I will be sharing various comfort techniques with you and your partner. This gives each of us an idea of what you may or may not prefer during labor. This is a very special time with a few giggles and some pampering and relaxation time. I prefer to give each client two prenatal visits. However, if booked very late in the pregnancy, it may only allow time for one prenatal visit. Each prenatal takes about 1-2 hours. For the second prenatal, we meet between 35-37 weeks. During our prenatals, together, we review your birth plan, talk about supplies needed/wanted whether a hospital, birth center or home birth, go over breastfeeding preparation, and discuss your wishes for other people you would like present during labor and or birth. We will also talk about postpartum planning.
You may notify me as soon as you like! Typically, I join at the onset of active labor. However, it is completely up to you, when you are ready for me, I will be there. I will stay with you in all locations (home, birth center or hospital) the duration of the labor/birth. I will remain with you for at least 1 hour after birth.
Baby's First Feeding Support
As you and your baby discover together the first feeding, I offer support to help both you and your baby on this journey. I will also offer access to other professional support for breastfeeding (professional lactation consultants) should you desire it. I am trained in basic breastfeeding education. I have breastfed four of my children for a combined total of over 10 years.
Within 2 weeks of your birth, I will visit you at your home. I will listen as you share your experience and go over any questions or concerns you may have. We will also talk about how your postpartum plan is working, your emotional wellbeing and breastfeeding. If additional short term or long term postpartum help is desired, I can offer resources to wonderful doulas specializing in professional postpartum care. Postpartum visits are typically 1-2 hours.
As a Doula, I Do Not
Perform any Clinical Tasks
I do not perform clinical or medical tasks such as taking blood pressure or temperature, fetal heart tone checks, vaginal examinations, or postpartum clinical care.
Make Decisions for You
I do not make decisions for you or intervene in your clinical care. I provide informational and emotional support, while respecting
Speak to the Staff on Your Behalf
I do not speak to the staff on your behalf. I am there to comfort and support the mother, and to enhance communication between the mother, her partner and medical professionals.
Project any of My Own Beliefs onto Your Experience
I do not let my personal values or biases get in the way of caring for you. You make your own informed decisions and I support you.