Image above courtesy of: MH Photography-Manhattan, KS
A doula! What is a birth doula?
The word, "doula", comes from the greek word: δούλη, which is translated to mean, "A woman who serves". A doula, put into plain terms is a professionally trained and experienced birthing and labor coach. She provides physical, emotional and educational support to a mother and her partner before, during and shortly after the labor and delivery experience.
Numerous clinical studies have shown:
- A reduction in need for Pitocin, forceps or vacuum extraction and cesareans
- And with a doula, a mother tends to reduce a mother's need for pain medication and/or epidurals
- Reduction in negative feelings about birth experience
- With a doula, labors tend to be shorter with fewer complications
- When parents use a doula they feel more secure
- They are successful in adapting and building new family dynamics
- Greater success with breastfeeding
- Greater self-confidence
- Tendency to have less postpartum depression
- Lower incidence of abuse
(Information acquired from Dona.org.)
For more on research: http://www.dona.org/resources/research.php