Why Doula? DOU·LA /ˈDO͞OLƏ/
When I first became a doula and I had told my friends and family, most people had one question… “What’s a doula?”
The following information is provided by the DONA International website. You can find this and much more at www.dona.org.
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!
A birth doula…
A doula is/does NOT…
- A medical professional: I do not make medical decisions for you. As your doula, I will help get you the information you need in order to make an informed decision.
- Preform medical duties; including, but not limited to checking your fetal heart tones, blood pressure readings, vaginal exams, etc.- medical procedures that are under the legal definition of practicing medicine. All support provided is strictly non medical. It is physical, emotional, spiritual, and educational.
- Speak to the birthing staff on your behalf regarding your health care decisions. I will assist you in understanding your different options available and encourage you to effectively communicate your decisions. You or your partner will speak on your behalf to the clinical staff.
- Suggest, prescribe, diagnose, advise you in prescriptions, alternative medication, or medical advise pertaining to you or your baby. I will present you information that you can digest and consult your caregiver about.
Birth should not be a time in a woman’s life when she has to FIGHT for anything.
- Carla Hartley