When you invite a doula to your birth, you know that there is always someone in the room who believes in you more than you do. A doula is respectful of your birth choices and helps you stay on track for your ideal birth. Doulas work with partners and help them participate in the birth as much as they are comfortable.
Doulas are knowledgeable women - they stay current on the options you have during birth. You don't need to stress to remember all the details from prenatal classes. She will always have that information ready so you can decide which option you would prefer.
Doulas are also a familiar person. In a hospital setting where many of the birthing team are strangers, it is comforting to have the same person supporting you through birth. In a home setting with midwives, doulas allow the midwives to provide the best clinical care possible because they know mum is well supported.
Since doulas do not provide clinical care such as examinations or blood pressure, she can focus her undivided attention on you! She can also explain the benefits, risks, and alternatives of different procedures. Doulas encourage you to use that information to make informed choices and will support you in your decisions.
A recent study* has shown that having a doula support you during birth:
- Reduced the caesareans rate by 50%
- Reduced length of labour by 25%
- Reduced the use of epidurals by 60%
- Reduced the use of forceps by 30%
- Decreases postpartum depression
- Improves breastfeeding
Your doula is available to you 24 hours a day. You can call for questions or concerns and know that you have a listening ear and someone who can provide you with information or resources. You are never alone when you have a doula!