September 22, 2016
What is a Doula?
Pregnancy is one of the most wonderful, confusing, exciting, and sometimes scary moments of a women’s life. From morning sickness, to crazy cravings (who says apple sauce on pizza is wrong?), to feeling those first flickering movements of life within you – pregnancy is an incredible experience. If you’re like many to-be moms, you probably spend countless hours online trying to learn as much as you can about pregnancy, babies, and motherhood. So, why not take a few minutes to learn about a great service that pregnant moms have relied on for decades: doulas!
The world “doula” is a Greek word that means “women’s servant.” Doulas are non-medical professionals who assist mothers before, during, and after birth. They offer expectant mothers necessary support throughout early motherhood including:
• Educational support. Doulas are very knowledgeable about pregnancy, various birthing methods, and mother-baby care. They will help guide you according to your personal wishes about pregnancy, birth, and motherhood, so you can have a memorable experience that is perfect for you and your baby.
• Emotional support. Motherhood can be difficult. Though doulas do not provide medical care, they offer compassionate emotional support. She will walk with you on your unique journey while offering support each step of the way, so you can fully enjoy every moment.
• Physical support. Doulas are labor-coaches at their finest. Whether you want to go natural, or prefer some other method of labor and delivery, a doula will ensure you are as comfortable and prepared as possible.
Doulas are highly-trained and experienced in prenatal care, labor and delivery, and post-partum care. But that’s not all. Your doula is someone you can trust who will partner with you and your family during one of the most important times of your lives.
What Can a Doula Do for You?
Doulas fill many roles within the educational, emotional, and physical support they offer. Here are some of the benefits of having a doula during each phase of early motherhood:
• Prenatal care. Your doula offers you support as you adjust to the emotional and physical changes within you. Whether you need a late-night friend to talk to, or advice on creating an ideal birth plan that suits your values and environment, your doula is your go-to support system and advocate.
• Labor and delivery. As mentioned above, doulas are remarkable birthing coaches. She will help keep you comfortable, focused, and encouraged when you feel you can’t go any longer. Your doula will also offer massage, guide you to appropriate laboring positions, help you through relaxation techniques, and offer support for your partner and family.
• Post-partum care. After delivery, your doula offers support for you and baby including breastfeeding guidance and encouraging a strong bond between mother and baby. If you have a c-section, your doula will offer additional support during your recovery.
Whether you’re planning your first pregnancy, or are expecting your second, third, or even fourth child, each pregnancy is unique and deserves individualized care. A doula will help make your pregnancy and birth as memorable and joyous as possible.
This blog written by Lisa Raynor, a childbirth and postpartum doula in Coral Springs, FL. She is also a mom of three boys, a wife, and loves to blog about pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum care and breastfeeding. Lisa attends births throughout Broward County and Boca Raton. Call for a FREE consultation today! 954-914-3933