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Doula
dou·​la (doo·la)

A person who is trained to provide advice, information, emotional support, and physical comfort to parents during pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period. 

A doula is not a medical professional. We are birthing partners, witnesses, continued support, helping hands, friendly faces, active-listeners, advocates and protectors of your space.

There are many reasons that a person may choose to engage the help and guidance of a doula - from negative past experiences and nerves, to wanting additional support in pregnancy and beyond.

Evidence shows that having a doula can reduce chances of needing caesarian births, instrumental delivery via forceps or ventouse/vacuum, induction and even painkillers. 

A doula will typically provide support in three ways: emotional, educational and physical.

 

Emotional support can look like talking about anxieties and fears, holding your space, constant reassurance, active-listening and advocating for your wishes. 

 

Educational support can look like providing relevant and up-to-date information about topics such as infant feeding, birthing positions etc. and answering any questions you may have. 

 

Physical support may be rubbing your shoulders, holding your hand through contractions or even joining you on your first outing postpartum. It can also look very practical like making hot drinks, blowing up a birthing pool or holding baby while you have a well-deserved rest. 

Tiny Hands
Image by Rebekah Vos

Your doula should make you feel safe, supported and secure throughout your time together, so it is important that you find the doula that is the right fit for you, your pregnancy, your birth, and your parenting plans. 

What do I mean by this? Like all professionals, doulas have boundaries and preferences, so you need to make sure your's align. For example, if you are planning on free-birthing (giving birth without a doctor or midwife present) you would need a doula who would feel comfortable with this. 

It is totally okay to meet with and speak to multiple doulas before making such a big decision!

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