What is a doula?
The word "doula" comes from the ancient Greek meaning "a woman who serves" and is now used to refer to a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after birth.
What do doulas do?
Provides emotional support
Offers various comfort measures such as movement, positioning, breathing and relaxation.
Helps to provide information and resources about various birth choices
Continuously reassures and comforts the mother
Supports the birth choices the mother has made
Advocates for the mother and helps encourage good communication between the mother and her care provider
Also helps look after the mother's partner during labor
A doula does not:
Perform clinical tasks such as vaginal exams or fetal heart monitoring
Give medical advice or diagnose conditions
Judge you for decisions that you make
Let their personal values or biases get in the way of caring for you
Take over the role of your husband or partner
Deliver the baby