What is a Birth Doula?
A birth doula is a non-medical professional that provides educational, emotional, and physical support before, during and after childbirth. Continuous support during labor is shown to improve the overall health of mother and baby. It has been associated with shortened labor time, lower need for medical interventions or pain relief, and a reduction in the risk of cesarean section.
The goal of a birth doula is for the mother to feel safe, be informed and feel that her wishes are heard. Being heard by the provider is a leading variable in satisfaction of the birth experience. Birth is fluid, it requires adaptation, movement, changes in positions and perspectives. It is truly a dance between baby and mother. A birth doula may go from being a cheerleader to a quiet observer, listener, and comforter.
Birth Doula at Motherhood Matters
Most doula-client relationships start months before the expected arrival of baby. During these visits, either in your home or in the comfort of the home-like atmosphere of our Motherhood Matters office, the doula, mother, and her partner develop a relationship where they are able to develop a birth plan that fits your perspective of needs and wishes for birth. We will take the time to discuss thoughts, answer all questions and address any fears or concerns that you and your partner may have.
As a Spinning Babies Aware Practitioner (SpBAP), Susan will take additional time to teach you specific postural techniques used both while pregnant and in labor to ease and facilitate an easier birth. While pregnant, your beautiful body is hard at work and changing rapidly. Hormones are released to soften ligaments in the pelvis. Habitual movements throughout the day can cause imbalances in our body. Learning to move with intention and using supportive postures will reduce many of the discomforts of pregnancy and encourage baby to find her/his best position in your body for birth.
What is a Professional Postpartum Doula?
A Professional Postpartum Doula is a trained professional that provides personalized care of families with a newborn. The postpartum doula understands that new and experienced parents need time and support to adjust to this new season for their family. She provides a listening ear and personalized, physical help to make this transition period seem less overwhelming. She will support your parenting choices and offer information form evidence-based research rather than personal opinion.
What can a Professional Postpartum Doula do for you?
At the beginning of each shift, the Professional Postpartum Doula will check in and collaborate with the mother on the needs and goals for that day. Postpartum support from a postpartum doula can include:
· Physical and emotional recovery from childbirth (non-medical care)
· Non-judgmental companionship and support
· Infant feeding support
· Newborn care and development
· Infant sleep resources
· Infant soothing skills
· Bonding and attachment coping skills
· Family adjustment
· Sibling support
· Assistance with pet adjustment
· Connection to community resources
· Babywearing techniques
· If time permits, household organization, light housework, meal planning and meal preparation