I’m very excited to be sharing a post over a Childbirth World today. Childbirth World is a blog that has posts mainly authored by Samantha Kauffman- a childbirth educator at Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial.

A doula is a professionally trained birthworker whose goal is to educate and empower woman about their choices during pregnancy, labor and delivery and postpartum.

There are many studies that show improvement in birth outcomes when a doula is present. An article by Evidence Based Birth gives a great overview of what a doula is, how a doula can help you in your labor and also provides some stats that should make every pregnant woman seriously consider having a doula at her upcoming birth.

Here are some of those stats from an updated Cochrane review published in 2012 by Hodnet et al. – this study shows that when a woman has continuous labor support(ie, a doula) there is a decrease by:
* 28% in risk of cesarean section
* 9% in the use of any pain medications
* 34% in the risk of being dissatisfied with the birth experience

To read the whole article from Evidence Based Birth click here.

As a birth and postpartum doula I would like to give you a little more personal look into what your doula does.

doula-quote1
Source.

Prenatally
* your doula wants to get to know the real you- this will help her know how to help you during labor
* your doula will want to know what bugs and bothers you so that she can avoid them during labor
* your doula loves your questions and will help you find answers if she doesn’t know it
* your doula waits impatiently with you for test results
* your doula will cry with you and hug you when you learn bad news
* your doula will be excited with you when you learn your baby’s gender

To learn more about what your doula will do during labor and how she can help during the postpartum period click here.

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