Labor: Thinking of Hiring a Doula for Labor Support?

You may want a natural childbirth experience -- one free of interventions and medications. The doula will offer you alternative comfort measures. The doula can suggest changing positions to decrease the pain, provide massage, use heat and cold and provide counterpressure. These, and other comfort measures, can be discussed with your doula in advance of childbirth.

What Can Your Doula Do?
Meet with you and your birth partner before your baby is born to get to know you better.

Review your birth plan to know the type of experience you are looking for and make suggestions for coping with various situations during childbirth that may occur.

Explain the various comfort methods available, and help you use them during childbirth.

Be there for you during labor as soon as you want your doula. (Many doulas will come to your home when you are in labor.) Your doula will remain with you until you are comfortably settled with your newborn after the birth.

Help you begin breastfeeding your newborn.

Visit you after the birth, within a few days, to go over the details of your birth experience and to answer any questions that you may have.

What are the Benefits of Hiring a Doula?
-- 50 percent reduction in the cesarean rate
-- 25 percent shorter labor
-- 60 percent reduction in epidural requests
-- 40 percent reduction in oxytocin use
-- 30 percent reduction in analgesia use
-- 40 percent reduction in forceps delivery

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