The Pros and Cons of birth doula

The Pros and Cons of birth doula

Postpartum doulas are educated professionals ready to help in the months after a newborn arrives. Having a new baby in the house can be a stressful time. Lack of sleep and physical exhaustion from delivery make tasks like breastfeeding, cleaning house, caring for other children and laundry seem overwhelming. Most people do not know that trained postpartum doulas are available.

These pregnancy specialists are trained in the art of breastfeeding. They can help by teaching techniques learned through experience and training. Many factors play into successful breastfeeding such as the overall health of the mother, her level of stress and healthy eating. A postpartum doula is a trained lactation consultant who can help make sure breastfeeding is successful.

They also can assist by proving meals and babysitting not only the newborn but other siblings as well. Sometimes just allowing a new mother to sleep in the best thing a postpartum doula can do. By taking care of the newborn and other children the new mother is can relax and get much needed sleep.

Educated in the physiology of the postpartum period, a doula can help answer questions and make sure the mother is not experiencing any physical problems. She is also trained in normal newborn growth and development making her a good source of information to draw from. Her assurance and support can help a new mother relax and enjoy her newborn.

This type of doula will work about 4-6 hours at a time. She will arrive and often begin by changing the sheets on the bed. After feeding the infant, the mother is sent to bed while the doula takes care of the household. The doula will usually do light cleaning, laundry and cook a meal. She will entertain and feed birth doula siblings giving the mother time to take care of her. Some mothers take this time to get out of the house and run errands or schedule appointments. Knowing her household is in the hands of a competent and trained doula gives her the confidence to take much needed time for rest and relaxation.

Postpartum doulas fill a need in a society where many women do not have the help and support of family. Even if family and friends are available the postpartum doula's training and education give her an advantage. Knowing and trusting a professional postpartum doula makes the entrance of the newborn into the family a smoother transition. The postpartum doula can be a valuable assistant for any new mother.

As more couples are choosing natural childbirth, the practice of using various types of doulas is becoming popular. The word doula is a Greek word and means to be a woman's servant. A doula is educated and trained to deal with different aspects of pregnancy and childbirth. There are three different types of doulas; antepartum, labor (birth) and postpartum. Each type of doula specializes in a different stage of pregnancy and/or birth.

The role of an antepartum doula is to provide assistance in the months preceding the birth of a child. For mothers-to-be who are put on bed rest or having a high risk pregnancy, an antepartum doula can provide invaluable services. The antepartum doula provides much needed practical help. The antepartum doula can assist with errands, laundry, cooking and everyday chores that the pregnant mother can no longer do. She also provides much needed emotional support. Having been trained in all aspects of pregnancy she can answer questions and calm the fears of an already stressed mother-to-be.

A labor doula's job is to assist once labor begins. She will usually meet with the couple several times prior to labor to discuss what they want during labor and help them create a birth plan. She establishes a relationship with the couple and answers questions during the months prior to giving birth. She does not provide medical care but can be a great source of information. Once contractions begin, the labor doula begins her work in earnest. Once it is established that the mother is in true labor, the labor doula will be her constant companion. The labor doula is trained in relaxation and comfort techniques to assist in both labor and delivery. Her job is to try and ensure that the couple has the best birth experience possible.

The last type of doula is a postpartum doula. A postpartum doula's job is to assist in the weeks following the birth of a baby. Her education and training in breastfeeding and newborn growth and development allows her to expertly assist the new mother. She provides physical help with things such as laundry, cooking and cleaning. She provides emotional support and gives the mother time to rest and relax knowing everything is under control.

If you are considering hiring doula for any aspect of your pregnancy, make sure you find one that you are confident in using. Consult with several if need be to find the one that you feel most comfortable with. Confidence in your doula is highly important so interview as many as you need. Most doulas will not charge for the initial consultation. Hiring one of the three types of doulas is an important decision so take your time and find one that meets your requirements.