Almost every time I introduce myself I am met with the following reaction.
“What is a doula?”
Today I want to tell you exactly what I do so that you can better understand the profession and why you should consider having one from conception and throughout your postpartum journey.
A doula is a non medical professional who supports a person through a health-related experience such as fertility, pregnancy, birth, postpartum care, sex, miscarriage, abortion, stillbirth, and even death. We are there to support people in multiple ways and through many situations without providing medical care.
Doulas are NOT midwives or medical doctors so we do not diagnose or treat anything. However, we can support you by providing evidence based education, mental support, and physical comfort. According to evidence, the support of a doula can improve both physical and psychological outcomes for the birthing person and their baby.
Here are 3 reasons why you need a doula if you are trying to conceive or you’re pregnant.
- Doulas offer comfort. Fertility battles and pregnancy can be very stressful, but doulas are trained to be there to offer evidenced-based advice, be a listening ear, support you during treatments and labor, and offer reassurance.
- Having a doula can decrease the rate of needed interventions during delivery.
Studies have shown that there is a decreased rate in the use of forceps, vacuum extractions, and episiotomies.
- Doulas help you to take control of your own care. Doulas educate their clients, teach them to become their own advocates, and empower them to take control of their own care. As a non-medical professional, they offer unbiased support and help you to navigate through treatments, doctor visits, and even your birthing experience without having to rely on Google.
If you’re on the fence about hiring a doula, take a look at what the research has to say: