I am currently looking for couples to attend my certifying childbirth class series- Birthing With Purpose, written and developed by me through training with the Boston Association of Childbirth Educators. I am offering this comprehensive, mindfulness-based training in a 4 class format, each class lasting 3 hours, at a significantly discounted rate. Class location to be determined. Don't miss this chance for a fun and full childbirth preparation series taught by a woman with three years of childbirth teaching experience and 12 years/ 150 births of birth doula experience. Please contact me if you are interested!
Click the link above to watch a video about Doula Support, courtesy of DONA International
So, what exactly is a Doula?
The word "doula" comes from the ancient Greek meaning "a woman who serves"
The term is now used to refer to a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional, and informational support to the mother before, during, and just after birth; or who provides emotional and practical support during the postpartum period. (-DONA International)
Studies have shown that when doulas attend births, labors are shorter with fewer complications, babies are healthier and they breastfeed more easily.
A Birth Doula is someone who will meet with the pregnant person and their support people before the birth of the child to get to know them and help develop a vision for their ideal birth. The doula is available via phone and text for questions, resources, or just to talk. She provides continuous support to the birthing person throughout the entire labor and birth, starting when the birthing person requests her presence, and for at least 1-2 hours afterward to help to initiate breast feeding and ensure the family is comfortably settled before she leaves. During the labor and birth the doula is able to provide comfort measures such as massage, use of hot or cold packs, visualization and vocalization techniques, suggestions for body positioning, hydrotherapy, and various other techniques. The doula will also help the birthing person to achieve an environment of calm and comfort in whatever setting they choose to birth, making sure the birthing room is quiet and non-offensive to the birthing person's senses; perhaps using aromatherapy if the client has a particular scent they find calming, playing soft music, ensuring dim lighting, and ensuring privacy with closed doors and curtains. The doula also helps the birthing person and their birth companions to advocate for themselves and to remember their birth preferences, while providing information and support through each turn their birth takes so that they may remain calm, trusting, and ultimately satisfied with the experience of bringing their child into the world.
Research evidence shows that the quality services of a postpartum doula can ease the transition that comes with the addition of a baby to the family, improve parental satisfaction, and reduce the risk of mood disorders.
A Postpartum Doula offers information and physical and emotional support during the postpartum period, which many people refer to as the "fourth trimester". She assists with newborn care, helps care for other children in the family, helps with family adjustment, meal preparation, and light household chores (including laundry!), and many are willing to run simple errands for the family as well. Services can be tailored to each family's needs. The postpartum doula also offers evidence-based information on infant feeding, emotional and physical recovery from birth, infant soothing and coping skills for new parents and provides local resources for any services the family or birthing person might need outside of the doula's scope of practice. Many are also able to provide education on specialized parenting skills such as cloth diapering, baby wearing, baby led weaning, infant CPR, etc.
Research About Doulas
There are more studies being done all the time which show that having the support of a doula who stays within her scope of practice has definitive benefits such as reducing the use of interventions and reduction in cesarean rates, while posing no known risks.
The Hormonal Physiology of Childbearing:
"A Doula For Every Woman Who Wants One."
"A Doula For Every Woman Who Wants One."
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