Frequently Asked Questions About Doulas:
What is a birth doula?
A birth doula is an experienced professional who provides continuous physical and emotional support to the pregnant mother and her partner/family before, during and immediately after giving birth. Studies have shown that when doulas attend birth, labors are shorter with fewer complications, babies are healthier and they breastfeed more easily.
What is a postpartum doula?
A postpartum doula is a caring professional who specializes in providing emotional and practical support to brand new mothers during the postpartum period. The 3 months after a baby is born is referred to as the 4th Trimester.
What does birth doula do?
• Helps a woman and her partner prepare for and carry out their plans for the birth, including helping them learn what options they have
• Stays by the side of the laboring woman throughout her entire labor
• Understands the physiology of birth and the emotional needs of a woman in labor
• Provides emotional support and an objective viewpoint
• Helps a woman and her partner get the information they need to make decisions that are right for them
• Uses her knowledge of positioning, massage, breathing, relaxation, and other comfort measures to help speed and ease labor
• Facilitates communication between the laboring woman, her partner, and clinical care providers
• Assists with the first breastfeeding experience and mother/baby bonding
• Knows that childbirth is a key life experience that the mother will always remember
Why should I have a doula?
Women need and deserve to have nurturing support and encouragement as they transition into motherhood. Many studies have shown women who use a doula during labor and birth are less likely to have a cesarean birth, are less likely to need Pitocin or pain medication(s) and are more likely to report a positive birth experience. Other proven benefits include an increase in the likelihood and length of breastfeeding and a decrease in the occurrence of postpartum depression. Research studies are cited below.
I am planning to have an induction / epidural / cesarean / VBAC. Should I still have a doula?
Yes!! While it is true that a woman who is planning a natural, drug-free birth will benefit the most from having a doula (because doulas are experts at helping women cope with the pain of labor), all women and families can benefit from the support and guidance that a doula provides. If you are planning an induction, epidural, or cesarean, or you have a high-risk pregnancy, a doula can be especially helpful to you. All of these situations will require more interventions, and a doula can help you to understand these procedures, prepare for them, and avoid the ones you do not want, as well as minimizing the risks associated with them. A doula’s patience, nurturing, and expertise can help you to achieve a safe and satisfying birth experience no matter what the situation.
Does a doula replace my partner as my primary support during labor?
Sometimes a mother-to-be and her partner are concerned that a doula will take the partner’s place as the mother’s main source of support during their child’s birth. A doula does not take the place of a birth partner. A doula assesses each birth and family separately, and finds the ways she can best serve the woman and her partner. A doula provides support, and offers insight from the training she has completed and her experience in helping laboring women. A doula’s role is to help the mother and her partner understand birth options, help with comfort measures for lessening pain, and to encourage the mother and partner throughout the entire experience.
Why should Anasuya be my birth doula?
Anasuya’s birthing packages offer more than a typical doula package will. Most doula’s will meet with you and your partner 1-2 times before your birth to discuss your birth plan and expectations. This meeting is usually 6-8 weeks prior to your due date. The next time you see your doula is usually during your labor.
Anasuya birth packages begin early in your pregnancy. This is to properly prepare you for your labor and to help you build complete trust and comfort with Anasuya. Your child’s birth is an intimate and incredibly important experience. She understands the honor of being there with you while you make memories that will last a lifetime. It is for this reason that she begins the important preparation with you early.
Anasuya will meet with you for many private sessions throughout your pregnancy. During these sessions you will prepare physically and emotionally through prenatal yoga, massage, hypnosis and visualization techniques. Anasuya will also use these sessions to educate you on your options and ease your fears as your due date approaches.
Additionally, Anasuya can offer Labor Tub Rental, Postpartum Services, Placenta Services and Professional Photography as add-on's to enhance your birthing experience.
Anasuya’s birthing packages will give you all the tools you need to be prepared, confident, present and connected during your entire labor. If you have additional questions about what Anasuya can offer you please contact us.
When should I hire Anasuya as my Doula?
As soon as possible. The earlier Anasuya can begin your preparation and training the better. Also, please keep in mind that because of the premium nature of Anasuya’s doula services, space is limited. There are times when Anasuya cannot responsibly take on new mother’s-to be. If you are interested in learning more, please contact us.