What is the role of a Doula?
What is a Doula? - Doula comes from the greek, meaning -a woman who serves.
I like to refer the definition of a Doula as a birth coach or birth companion. As a Birth Doula, I support the pregnant women and their partner throughout their pregnancy, birth and postpartum period. I do not perform any clinical or medical tasks. I'am hired by the couple to provide them with continuous emotional, physical, and informational support.
I help the women see the realities of birth and to not fear it, I will empower her, by building her trust in her body and in the birth process. I provide them with information so they can feel confident to ask great questions and make informed decisions about their care at birth.
I help the women get through the physical part, the pain of labour, by managing it through different comfort measures. Some examples of those would be through touch or massage, movement, position changes, visualization, music and hydrotherapy. I am there to educate them, by helping them list the pros and cons of using medical interventions along with listing their risks and side effects.
I do not replace or take over the roll of the Dad or Partner, I'm there to help support him/her in supporting his wife/partner to the extent of what he/she feels comfortable with.
If Dad/Partner need a break, or needs to step away I will fill in. I will take the pressure off him/her by reassuring what is normal, and explaining what is happening.
The benefits of having a Doula present at birth has statistically shown a reduction in C-section rates, a drop in the need of pain medication or the need of augmentation with the use of oxytocin, and it has even shown a reduction in the length of the labour.
Labour and Birth will be the most challenging yet rewarding experience a couple will ever go through. I support their wishes and goals in whichever way they choose to birth. I will listen to their needs and wants and help them in having the best birth experience possible.