Birth Doula: Who Are They And Why Do You Need One?

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Would you like to plan every last detail about your baby's arrival? Are you figuring out how you will manage labor pains? Perhaps you are looking to reduce medical intervention during birth? If your answers are affirmative, you should consider hiring a birth doula. This post provides critical insights about birth doula services. 

Who Is A Birth Doula?

A birth doula is a professional with the expertise and experience to provide physical, emotional, and informational support to new and expectant mothers. Birth doulas act as pregnancy companions to mothers during and after birth. The aim of having a doula is to have a safe and healthy pregnancy and labor experience. 

There are two types of doulas, namely birth and postpartum doulas. Typically, a birth doula provides support during pregnancy, labor, and childbirth. Conversely, a postpartum doula assists a new mother in the period immediately after the delivery. However, it is better to stick with one doula since most professionals can offer both services. 

What Does a Birth Doula Do?

A doula is not a medical practitioner like a gynecologist, obstetrician or midwife. Such medical professionals have the technical training and certification to care for low-risk pregnancies, handle deliveries and childbirth complications. A birth doula cannot order tests, prescribe medicines, or offer gynecology care during pregnancy. Instead, doulas provide emotional support to the mothers and their families throughout labor and delivery. Typically, a doula undergoes a certification course with an in-class and home study curriculum to become a birth doula certified professional. 

A birth doula may serve the following purposes:

  • Companion — acts as the soothing voice to help you relax throughout the process 
  • Informer — teaches about the labor and delivery process to make the experience less scary
  • Coach — trains on different non-medical pain management approaches such as massage, aromatherapy, music therapy, and reflexology 
  • Mediator and advocate — explains medical terms and procedures to enhance your decision-making processes 
  • Supporter — enhances your support system together with your partner, co-parent, or medical practitioner

Cost of Doula Service 

Primarily, doulas cost their services based on the services they provide. For instance, do you need prenatal visits, labor and delivery support, or postpartum assistance? The service cost may vary with the number and duration of the scheduled visits. Notably, a doula may charge you an hourly price or a flat fee. Fortunately, in some states, Medicaid plans cover the cost of doulas. Also, check with your private health insurance provider to establish if your policy includes labor, lactation, and childbirth education support. 

Whether you opt for medicated or non-medicated childbirth, a doula will provide you with essential labor and delivery support. However, ensure you get a trained and certified birth doula who can act as extra insurance in your birth experience. Get referrals from family, friends, and your primary healthcare provider. To learn more, contact a company like Dignity Doula Services.