A doula is a trained professional who provides physical, emotional, and informational support to a person during pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period. Doulas can be an invaluable resource for expectant parents, helping them navigate the challenges and uncertainties of childbirth and early parenting. Research suggests that hiring a doula can have positive outcomes for both mothers and infants in many areas. Based on numerous studies, below are some of the proven benefits of hiring a doula:
Shorter labor: A meta-analysis of 11 studies found that doula support was associated with a 25% reduction in the length of labor (Klaus, Kennell, & Klaus, 1993).
Lower risk of cesarean delivery: A systematic review of nine studies found that women who received doula support during labor had a 28% lower risk of having a cesarean delivery compared to women who did not have a doula (Hodnett, Gates, Hofmeyr, & Sakala, 2013).
Higher rates of spontaneous vaginal birth: A review of 12 studies found that women who received doula support during labor had higher rates of spontaneous vaginal birth compared to women who did not have a doula (Hodnett et al., 2013).
Lower use of pain medication: Eight studies found that doula support was associated with a 50% reduction in the use of pain medication (Hodnett et al., 2013).
Higher rates of breastfeeding success: Ten studies found that women who received doula support during labor and the postpartum period had higher rates of breastfeeding success compared to women who did not have the support of a doula (Hodnett et al., 2013).
We understand pregnancy is a very personalized experience. No two expecting mothers will have the same childbirth journey. That is why we encourage you to listen to yourself and honor your needs as an expectant mother. Below are five common signs that hiring a doula might be the best decision for you.
You want additional support during labor and delivery. Doulas are trained to provide non-medical support to mothers during childbirth, including physical comfort measures, emotional support, and guidance through the birthing process. If you're feeling anxious or uncertain about childbirth, a doula can provide an extra layer of comfort and reassurance.
You have specific childbirth preferences. If you have specific preferences for your childbirth experience, such as wanting a natural childbirth or planning to use hypnobirthing techniques, a doula can help you advocate for your preferences with your healthcare provider and support you in achieving your goals.
You're having a high-risk pregnancy. If you're pregnant with multiples or have a medical condition that may complicate your childbirth experience, a doula can provide additional support and guidance to help ensure a safe and healthy delivery.
You're planning a home birth. If you're planning to give birth at home, a doula can provide valuable support and guidance throughout the process, helping you prepare for a successful home birth and navigate any challenges that may arise.
You're a first-time parent. If you're a first-time parent, you may be feeling overwhelmed and uncertain about what to expect during childbirth and the postpartum period. A doula can provide valuable information and support to help you confidently navigate this new experience.
If any of the above signs resonate with you, we would love to have a conversation about your birthing needs. We offer a free consultation where we will have an authentic conversation to get to know each other and learn more about your needs and our perinatal services.