A doula is a woman who is trained and experienced in the physical and emotional needs of birthing women and families. She understands the physiology of labor and birth and how to help a woman and her partner work with the process.
Since the beginning of time, women have been supporting women through childbirth and the postpartum period. It has been the collaborative effort and experiences of these women that have encouraged and empowered them to transition into motherhood successfully. In our fast-paced modern medical society, we have forgotten this very essential support system that has proven to help women give birth naturally. Our doula, working in partnership with IHI is an educated, trained, and caring birth professional whose main objective are to provide informational, emotional, and physical support to women and their partners through pregnancy, labour, and the postpartum period.
Whether the birth takes place in a hospital, birthing center or home whether the baby is delivered by a doctor or midwife, a doula is a valuable asset to any birth team. Research shows that the support of a doula throughout pregnancy optimizes a woman’s chance of having a healthier birth experience and a healthier infant.
Studies have shown that the presence and support of a professional labor assistant (doula) can:
- Shorten labor by 25%
- Reduce the overall cesarean rate by 50%
- Decrease the need for pain medication by 30%
- Limit the requests of epidurals by 50%
- Decrease the need for forceps by 40%
It’s never too late to hire a doula. She can join you at any point in the process.