Birth Doula Support
birth center birth
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
The Evidence on Doulas
- 25% decrease in the risk of Cesarean; the largest effect was seen with a doula (39% decrease)*
- 8% increase in the likelihood of a spontaneous vaginal birth; the largest effect was seen with a doula (15% increase)*
- 10% decrease in the use of any medications for pain relief
- Shorter labors by 41 minutes on average
- 38% decrease in the baby’s risk of a low five minute Apgar score
- 31% decrease in the risk of being dissatisfied with the birth experience
A birth doula provides support in four pillars: educational support, physical support, emotional support, and advocacy and not only for the birthing mother, for the partner too! Here is a great article to read!
Educational support ensures the mother/birthing person and partner understand the physiology and anatomy surrounding birth, their legal & birth rights, their choices in birth which in turn help mothers/birthing folks and partner make informed choices. I share evidence-based resources for making informed decisions regarding your care in pregnancy, labor, birth, postpartum and for the care of your newborn.
Physical support provides non-painful input which closes the “gate” to painful input (Gate Control Theory of Pain). Non-painful input can come in the forms of comforting touch, counter pressure, comfort measures using a Rebozo, TENS, therapy balls and more. We practice and select ones that fit your needs and I will spend time teaching the husband/wife/partner how to use them. I am well versed on the biomechanics of the pelvis and understand how to make position changes that support fetal position and help facilitate a vaginal birth.
Emotional support is important to really help a birthing mother and the partner feel supported. I provide this in many ways, but the goal is to ensure you have an empowered, memorable birth, one that belongs to you, a birth where you had the support you needed, felt heard and respected and one where medical interventions were introduced as desired and when medically necessary. As your doula, I can ensure your voice and wishes are heard, the birth space is respected and made safe, the your body is able to release tension and fear, while positive birth affirmations remind you of your abilities and strengths.
A doula is able to advocate for both the birthing person and their partner a handful of ways including:
speaking up for/on the behalf of the birthing person
amplifying their voice to ensure their wishes are heard
supporting the birthing person and their partner to get information
providing support to the birthing person and their partner in making informed decisions regarding what happens to their body
(Evidence-Based Birth – Kalaitzidis and Jewell 2015)