I had a doula. Found her through DONA she became a good family friend by now. She was present when both my kids entered this world, and I can tell you that my experience without her would have been much different, and not in a good way. What she helped me with the most? Easing the pain from my contractions; she knew exactly where to press, for how long, and exactly how strong. If you’re not sold on other benefits of having a doula, hire for the PAIN if nothing else. They make a HUGE difference. Take my word for it!
“The word “doula” comes from the ancient Greek meaning “a woman who serves” and 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.
Studies have shown that when doulas attend birth, labors are shorter with fewer complications, babies are healthier and they breastfeed more easily.
Numerous clinical studies have found that a doula’s presence at birth:
– tends to result in shorter labors with fewer complications
– reduces negative feelings about one’s childbirth experience
– reduces the need for pitocin (a labor-inducing drug), forceps or vacuum extraction and cesareans
– reduces the mother’s request for pain medication and/or epidurals
Research shows parents who receive support can:
– Feel more secure and cared for
– Are more successful in adapting to new family dynamics
– Have greater success with breastfeeding
– Have greater self-confidence
– Have less postpartum depression
– Have lower incidence of abuse”