What is a doula?
Doula is a compassionate experienced person who offers emotional and practical support to a woman (or a couple) before, during and after childbirth. A doula will do everything in their power to take away any worry, doubts and stress away from their client with a caring and professional attitude. That, therefore enables a woman to have the most satisfying and empowered time that she can during pregnancy, birth and the early days as a new mum. A doula understands the physiology and emotions of birth and stays by the woman’s side all throughout labour. One of the doula’s primary goals is to care for the mother’s emotional health and enhance her ability to have positive birth memories. This type of support and reassurance also helps the whole family to relax and enjoy the experience.
Research has shown that having a doula present:
- Shortens first-time labour by an average of 2 hours
- Decreases the chance of caesarean section by 50%
- Decreases the need for pain medication
- Helps fathers participate with confidence
- Increases success in breastfeeding
- Helps to experience birth in a positive way
What do I do?
As a doula, I believe that childbirth is a normal part of life, therefore everyone should feel safe, comfortable and in control when giving birth. No matter where and how you choose to do it, I am there to think ahead and deal with some situations for you so that you are empowered and secure to do what feels right for you in the moment.
Whether you are:
- at home
- on the labour ward
- at the Birth Centre
- having a Caesarean birth.
As your doula, I am there to support and encourage you every step of the way and point you to the right information when you need to make a choice. I will accompany you (and your partner) through the process of preparing for birth and support you during labour, birth and bonding.
I do not interfere with medical professionals but I can assist in examinations & be in attendance as a support & chaperone.
I cannot and will not make decisions for you but I can act as a spokesperson for you and rely your wishes (which you would have expressed to me prior to labour) should you wish me to do so.
You are in control, my role is to be led by you, providing the support that you may need along the way. The kind of support I give is often emotional, practical and informational, and will be offered unconditionally and without judgement. You are in charge and it is my mission to ensure you are comfortable during (and immediately after) your pregnancy. I tailor the services provided individually depending on your wishes, experience and preferences. It might be helping you navigate the NHS system; providing in-depth teaching on physiology of labour and birth; leading breath and relaxation sessions; helping you understand and process any feelings you have around birth and parenting; aid with writing your birth plan; pointing you towards relevant books and articles; sharing recommendations for local services and specialists; assisting with the shopping for the baby and packing the hospital bag; arming you with the information on caring for your newborn. The list can go on and on, until you feel “all set” both in the emotional and practical sense.
I do not come between you and your partner but rather support both of you during birth. I am able to make suggestions for labour progress, help with relaxation, breath, positioning and other comfort measures. I needed, I guide the partner to help the birthing mother. If the labour starts at home, I will help you decide when it’s the right time to go to the hospital, will travel with you and stay with you all the way through. I will help safeguard your bonding period and help with feeding your baby.
What is covered in your Doula package and how much does it cost?
Every single birth is completely different and every lady has different requirements and expectations.
Therefore the price depends on what you would like to include in your Doula Package.
This is what you can expect to include in your package.
- An initial free 30 min consultation to give us a chance to talk face to face and see if I might be the doula for you.
- Four antenatal meetings with you (and your partner) at your home.
- One-to-one Pregnancy yoga class (or classes) specifically tailored to help during labour and birth.
- Unlimited contact by phone, whatsapp or email all throughout your pregnancy from the time of booking.
- Help with writing a birth plan taking all your wishes into consideration.
- Coming shopping with you for the baby or alone if required.
- Assisting you getting the hospital bag ready or doing it myself if required.
- A 24/7 on-call period from 38 weeks of pregnancy until the baby is born.
- Attendance and support during labour & birth.
- Help with bonding – typically a few hours after the birth but definitely not ending before the first feed.
- Two postnatal sessions to de-brief the birth, help with the feeding or any other support needed (that can include holding the baby while you shower!).
- One Postnatal recovery meal tailored to your diet. Yes! I come to your house and come cook for you while you rest! (Usually you would request this in the first three days of resuming normal routine)
- 6 weeks of postnatal support via phone, whatsapp or email