The Loving Cedar, LLC

What is a Birth Doula Anyway?

The advantage of having a birth doula

doula

By Leah Jacobson CD (DONA): DONA-Certified Birth Doula

Birth is a sacred, special, amazing miracle that should be a beautiful experience. Women should be able to feel loved, empowered, and encouraged to follow their instincts, and birth the way they were meant too.

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So what exactly is a doula?

The Greek word for  doula is, “woman who serves”. A birth doula is a professionally trained person who is loving, caring, and compassionate. They provide continuous emotional support, physical comfort, and assistance to the birth person and their family before, during, and right after childbirth. A doula is an advocate, and a voice between the birth person and their care provider as well. They can help express needs and wants. This can help the birthing person understand and be able to give informed consent, as well as help everyone be on the same page. A doula has good knowledge and understanding of the birth process, along with the emotional needs of a the birthing person during labor. 

 

Doula Services

What is a doula's goal?

The goal of a doula is to help the birthing person have a safe and satisfying childbirth. At this time, the need for consistent, continuous support, comfort, encouragement, and most of all respect is vital. Having the individualized care based on their circumstances and preferences is how their journey is going to impact the rest of their lives, including the family’s lives. Doulas provide professional continuous physical and emotional support and assistance in gathering information for the birthing person and partner during labor and birth. The main crucial role is providing invaluable support for the entire labor and birth.

“Evidence suggests that, in addition to regular nursing care, continuous one-to-one emotional support provided by support personnel, such as a doula is associated with improved outcomes for women in labor”

                  – The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG)

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Earth Mama Organics Free Birth Plan

We have a say!

Don’t you think we should be able to choose to be in control of our health? What can happen if you give up total control of your decisions? Then someone else takes over and doesn’t give you the experience and journey you fully deserve or desire. Excitingly, women and child health care is increasingly becoming recognized in the world today. But, PTSD in birth is very common, including high rates of cesarean, and unnecessary use of interventions. And it will continue to be an ever-changing battle to help improve the care for women and children; especially during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum. Many women still today don’t know they have the right to stand up and say how and what they want for their pregnancy and birth. Most hospitals have been so accustomed to being fast-paced and impersonal. Women are quickly in and out before they even know what happened. Interventions are done many times without informed consent, but we can say something, and we can have a plan! We are actually aloud to do that! Isn’t that fabulous?! 

Did you know...?

Doulas are now widely accepted in many hospitals, birth centers, and home births throughout the world. Research has shown that the positive outcomes of births have drastically increased due to good emotional support, and a birth team available to the birthing person. The recognition of a doula’s contribution to improved birth outcomes is flying off the charts. In today’s world, that is vital. Let’s be honest here, labor and birth can be intimidating and scary. It is a journey that we should not have to experience alone or without support.

The Spoiled Mama

Evidence based outcomes for childbirth

The outcomes for the birth person and her family with doula support have created a positive impact, and the outcomes of childbirth have drastically improved. For example, obstetric outcomes include: less likely to have a cesarean section, less likely to use pain medication, or synthetic oxytocin to speed labor. Even for those who are not allowed to have loved ones present, and epidural was not routine or the medical care she is receiving is poor; having a doula has improved even the most unideal experiences.

The research statistics listed below comes from one of my favorite websites: evidencebasedbirth.com 

I am not an affiliate with the website, just a true fan. I would encourage you to check them out if you are wanting more information. 

Doulas make a difference!

Some of my favorite books and products for the birthing person and their partner!

Listed are a few items that are essential for labor and birth. To shop more of my favorite items click here for my resource page.

When it comes down to it, we ALL should have continuous support through labor and birth. Everyone deserves a wonderful birth story!

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