One of the the biggest bonuses of hiring a doula is that fact that she is a professional birth support person. Doulas are trained in the art of birth support, and have a keen eye and intuition on what a laboring mother needs. Things which a hospital midwife unfortunately does not always have time for (as much as she may want to). Things which your partner may not pick up on, or situations he may not know how to deal with. A doula has a heart that is caring and nurturing, yet is able to remain calm and focused if things go off the rails — something that can be very difficult for family members and partners. Because family and friends tend to have an emotional connection, in the event of a problem or at the peak intensity moments, they can buckle, not knowing what to do, say or think.
Studies consistently demonstrate very impressive benefits for the mother, father and baby, including:
- Reduction of negative feelings about one’s childbirth experience.
- Fewer caesarean sections
- Fewer requests for epidurals or use of pain medication
- Reduction in the use of synthetic oxytocin for inductions or augmentations
- Reduction in labor length
- Higher self-esteem, less anxiety and less depression at 6 weeks post-partum