A Doula accompanies a woman in labor, mothers the mother, and takes care of her emotional needs throughout childbirth. She provides support and suggestions for partners that can enhance their experiences of the birth. A postpartum Doula continues that valuable emotional support and guidance, helping a family make a smooth transition into new family dynamics. "What is a Doula?" 14 August 2007.

What is a Doula?

Benefits of a DOULA

 

Although doulas do not provide medical assistance, through loving touch, position and comfort measures they make childbearing bearable.


Numerous clinical studies have found that a doula's presence at birth:

 

  •     Results in shorter labors with fewer complications

  •     Reduces negative feelings about one's birthing experience

  •     Reduces the need for pitocin (a labor-inducing drug), forceps or vacuum extraction and cesareans

  •     Reduces the mother's request for pain medication and/or epidurals

RESEARCH

 

Research shows parents who receive support:

 

  •     Feel more secure and cared for

  •     Are more successful in adapting to new family dynamics

  •     Have greater success with breastfeeding

  •     Have greater self-confidence

  •     Have less postpartum depression

  •     Have lower incidence of abuse

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