A doula is a non-medical labour assistant, who provides continuous physical and emotional support to the birthing person and her partner throughout labour and birth.
A doula offers the one-to-one continuous care that the hospital staff team may be unable to provide.
The doula role provides the birthing person and their partner with three key things:
I will support you in labour, birth and postpartum. I am able to offer tools and strategies for improving the birthing person’s comfort and managing pain during labour.
As a Doula, I will also be able to make suggestions to maintain the safety of birth and to increase its efficiency.
My role is also to offer couples the emotional support to achieve their goals for the birth. This ensures that the birthing person experiences the best birth possible on the day.
I will provide the partner with minute to minute reassurance that all is well and to enable the partner to participate in supporting the laboring birthing person to the degree to which they feel comfortable. Additional support during a long labour, can mean that the partner is able to rest.
This makes it easier for the partner to enjoy the process and maintain a clear perspective, which can aid in informed decision-making.
My duty is to support the woman/birthing person, and their partner by providing them with cues to ask the midwife or doctor the right questions about their care.
This questioning process, enables the woman/birthing person to secure the information they need in order to make informed decisions during labour and birth.
When a woman/birthing person has been supported to make the decisions which are right for them during labour, their levels of satisfaction with the outcome of the birth will be high.
I will never make your decisions for you, or tell you how to birth your baby. I will always support you unconditionally while you do that for yourself.
All labouring people need quiet, warmth, privacy and darkness in order to minimize adrenaline release during labour and maximize the natural anaesthetic effects provided by the body’s endorphins.
It's paramount for me to ensure you have the birthing environment that you need. In order to do this, I will work with the birthing partner and the medical team to meet these basic needs, and create the space which will maintain the safety of the process, and ensure its efficiency.