Doula Support Service
WHAT IS A LABOR DOULA?
A Labor Doula is an experienced professional who is trained and educated in the labor and delivery process. She is not a medical provider, but she is experienced in childbirth and educated with up-to-date information on evidence-based practices.
A Labor Doula meets with you during your pregnancy to discuss your health, hopes, and fears. She will advocate for your choices and desires and will be there for you to inspire confidence about your labor and birth. She knows common policies and procedures with local hospitals and home birth providers, so she can help you prepare for the kind of birth you want.
She also provides physical and emotional comfort during labor, with techniques such as nurturing touch and relaxation methods to decrease labor pain, relieve anxiety, and increase emotional bonding. She does not replace the role of the father, birth partner, or other families but rather empowers them to be a source of support for the mother. A Labor Doula caters her services to the individual needs of that family. Once your Labor Doula is called to support you during your birth, she does not leave until after you've had your baby.*
She is also trained to help you with breastfeeding. After your birth, she will typically stay an hour or two to help start breastfeeding and help the new family settle in. Once you are home from the hospital or a few days following your birth, she'll see you at home to make sure you are doing well. She can offer troubleshooting advice and make referrals if you need extra assistance.
What do postpartum doulas do?
What a postpartum doula does changes from day to day, as the needs of the family change. Postpartum doulas do whatever a mother needs to best enjoy and care for her new baby. A large part of their role is in education. They share information about baby care with parents, as well as teach siblings and partners to “mother the mother.” They assist with breastfeeding education. Postpartum doulas also make sure the mother is fed, well hydrated, and comfortable.
How long does a postpartum doula spend with a family?
Doula support can last anywhere from one or two visits to more than three months.
What is a death doula do?
Just like a birth doula offers support during the birthing process, a death doula helps someone deal with their impending death and any preparations they need to make. In many cases, an end-of-life doula picks up where hospice services end — due to the constraints of insurance, most medical care professionals are restricted in what services they can perform, and how much time they spend with each patient. A doula bridges the gap between medical staff and family caregivers by providing time, support, and help with non-medical tasks. Their ultimate goal is to assist patients and their families in creating a personal, peaceful, and special end-of-life transition.