If you are expecting a baby, or planning to have one, chances are you have been doing research on how you can best prepare yourself for the pregnancy, labor, and postpartum. If the term doula has popped up in your research, then this article is for you. So, what is a doula?
Studies show that having a doula decreases the overall rate of cesareans by 50% and the length of labor by 25%
1. Doula Meaning
According to the American Pregnancy Association, a doula is an individual who is a labor support companion and has professional training in childbirth. When talking about a doula, most professionals are usually referring to the ‘birth doula’ who provides the mother to be with non-medical physical, emotional, and information support during her pregnancy and birth.
There is also another type of doula known as the ‘postpartum doula’ who helps with adjustment, in addition to physical and emotional support after childbirth. They also offer breastfeeding support in addition to information on baby soothing and coping skills for young parents, as well how to best take care of a newborn.