Six Reasons to add a Doula to Your Birth Team

 

1 – Better outcomes for mother

A study done in 20121 found that women who had uninterrupted support during labor were less likely to use pain medications. The need for vacuum or forceps to assist birth was also reduced. In addition, mother’s labor was an average of 40 minutes shorter. Negative feels about labor and delivery were reduced. The study also noted that when the individual providing the continuous support was neither part of the hospital or one of the mother’s family members or friends the benefits increased. Another study in 20132 found that odds of a cesarean section were 40.9% lower for women who had a doula present at birth.

2 – Better outcomes for baby

The 2012 study also found that babies born to mothers who had a doula present had a reduced chance of low Apgar scores.

3 – Doula prenatal care

At Mid Kansas Doula Services our Birth Doula package includes a prenatal visit. During that visit, we discuss the overwhelming amount of information that surrounds childbirth. We answer your questions and we help you develop a birth plan. In addition to the prenatal visit, we are available by call or text whenever you need someone. This is important because another study done in 20133 found that women who received this type of prenatal doula care had healthier pregnancies. Their babies were also at a reduced risk of preterm birth or low birth weight. They also found an increased feeling of motivation and empowerment compared to women who did not have doula services.

4 – Individualized Support

Whether you choose a homebirth or hospital birth, your doula is there for you and only you. During labor and delivery, the medical staff that are part of your birth team have other things they need to focus on. We do not have other patientsn, nor are we there to watch your or baby’s vital signs. Our complete focus is on doing whatever we can for you.

5 – Uninterrupted Support

We offer uninterrupted support from the time that you call until baby is born. Unlike other medical staff, we do not have a shift change or staff rotation. However, in the rare case an on call doula is needed, you will have met her before. Both doulas will also stay long enough to make sure there is no interruption to your labor support.

6 – They do not replace your partner or any other member of your birth team

We are not going to come in and take over for your partner. Instead, we will be there alongside him, helping him help you. Our presence also gives us the ability to give him a quick bathroom/nourishment break without leaving you without someone to support you.

 

References:
1. “Continuous support for women during childbirth.” Hodnett ED, Gates S, Hofmeyr GJ, and Sakala C.

2. “Doula care, birth outcomes, and costs among Medicaid beneficiaries.” Kozhimannil KB, Hardeman RR, Attanasio LB, Blauer-Peterson C, and O’Brien M.

3. “Impact of Doulas on Healthy Birth Outcomes” Kenneth J. Gruber, Susan H. Cupito, and Christina F. Dobson.

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Michele
Co-Owner and Doula at Mid Kansas Doula Services
Michele is a co-owner and doula for Mid Kansas Doula Services. Besides being a doula she also teaches Childbirth Education classes in Hutchinson, Kansas and surrounding areas. When she isn't working she spends time with her two daughters and husband in Hutchinson, where they live, enjoying the outdoors.