Frequently asked questions

What is a Doula?


A doula is a labor companion that provides continuous labor support to the mother, no matter what decisions the mother makes or how she chooses to give birth. The word “doula” actually comes from ancient Greek and means “Woman’s Servant.” Doulas often act as a bridge in communication between medical staff and families, helping both parties understand the goals and priorities of everyone in the room. Doulas are full of information and helpful resources. It has been said that a Doula is the Google to pregnancy and birth. Doulas do not replace your significant other by any means but provide a professional level of support. Doulas promote a positive birth experience protecting its memory for both mom and spouse.




What are the differences between a Doula and a Midwife?


Doulas provide emotional, physical and informational support throughout pegnancy. This support becomes continuous during labor, birth and immediately after birth. Some doulas such as ours even provide overnight doula services to mom and baby. Midwives provide medical care throughout pregnancy, labor and birth and the postpartum period. They work to keep moms and babies healthy, safe and low-risk.




Do doulas and midwives work together?


Absolutely! You can have one without the other although, they are both professionals, working together to make sure that you and baby are fully supported, throughout pregnancy, labor, birth and post partum.




If I have a doula, do I still need an OB/GYN?


Yes, they work as part of your team, but are not a replacement for either an OB/GYN or midwife.




What is the working relationship between a doula and an OB/GYN?


They are both part of the team supporting the birthing family. Doulas often help to bridge communication between the medical staff and the family. Doulas will be by your side thourought delivery to help you through.




Are doulas covered by insurance?


As of now, doulas are not generally covered by insurance, though many organizations are pushing to get coverage since we know that doulas can drastically lower health care costs with the support they provide prenatally and during birth! Many families have been able to use HSA or FSA funds for doula services. Some families even get some reimbursement for doula support after being persistent in contacting their insurance provider. Please see our steps on how to file for reimbursement. If your insurance will not pay for your doula, we do offer financial assistance to those who qualify.




When should I get a doula?


As soon or as late as you want one although hiring a doula earlier gives you more time to get aquainted. It is also best to search for a perfect match as soon as you can because many doulas are booked months in advance.




Do women who choose epidural anesthesia still benefit from a doula?


There is a myth that doulas only provide care for those interested in natural childbirth/unmedicated births. That misconception is far from the truth! Doulas provide care for women with and without medication, women who have vaginal births, unaccompanied teen mothers, women who have disabilities, women who plan cesarean sections, women who have unplanned cesarean sections or women who are planning a TOLAC (trial of labor after cesarean) or VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). Since the core of the doula’s belief is to make this the very best birth experience for a woman, the doula can be a benefit regardless of the special circumstances surrounding a birth.




Will The Doula Take The Place Of The Partner or Husband?


The doula can actually bring the couple closer. By making sure that the partner’s needs are met (food, drink, occasional back rubs, and reassurance), the woman and partner can work more closely together. The doula allows for the partner to participate at his own comfort level. Some husbands prefer to be there only to witness the birth of their child and to share this experience with the woman they love. They may not want to play an active role and do not want to be responsible for the woman’s comfort and emotional security. The doula can fill in and allow the partner to participate as he wishes, without leaving the woman’s needs unmet. When the husband chooses to be the major source of emotional support, the doula can supplement his or her efforts by running errands, making suggestions for comfort measures, and offering words of reassurance and comfort. During a long tiring labor, she can give the husband a break for a brief rest or change of scene. While the doula probably knows more than the husband about birth, hospitals, and maternity care, the husband knows more about the woman’s personality.




What do doulas do that produce such amazing results?


Many doulas are hired by clients early in their pregnancy, about the 5th or 6th month, but sometimes it the clients learns later in pregnancy and hires a doula days before labor begins. They begin building a trusting relationship with the client and discuss birthing options and reinforce many concepts learned in childbirth class. The doula is also the familiar face in a sea of strangers when the clients are in labor and go to the hospital. There is closeness and a trusting relationship that builds. Doulas also are trained in nonpharmacological methods of pain relief and have an understanding in the natural processes of labor and labor enhancement. They are skilled at massage, breathing techniques, relaxation, acupressure, hydrotherapy, aromatherapy, upright positioning, counter pressure and relaxation techniques. They generally meet with you prior to your birth, are present during birth, and offer follow up visits as well.
Their most valuable tools are their hands and their loving patience. A doula does not speak for her client(s) but empowers the client to make informed decisions about labor and birth. A doula does not work against the better health wisdom for her client nor does she encourage or participate in creating a confrontational environment, either prenatally or during labor/birth. A doula does NO clinical tasks such as vaginal exams, monitoring/interpreting fetal heart rates or recommending certain modes of treatment. Doulas do not deliver babies.





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Birth and Postpartum Doulas | Breastfeeding Support  |  Yoga  |  Educational Classes

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