Benefits of a Doula

A doula is a labor support assistant who is not a mother's partner and provides continuous reassurance, comfort, encouragement and support. She is dedicated to both mother and partner, helping them to understand and embrace their birth. Usually this person is a trained and experienced birth professional who supplies knowledge, employs various comfort techniques and utilizes a variety of tools to help guide parents towards a positive birth experience.


Benefits of having a Doula attended birth include:

  • Fewer medical complications (maternal bleeding, fever & infection)
  • Less instance of medical intervention (Episiotomy, IV, rupturing/stripping of membranes)
  • Lower use of induction/labor augmentation medications (pitocin, cytotec, cervidil)
  • Reduces risk for labor to end in surgical delivery (cesarean section)
  • Significant decrease in requests for medical pain management (epidurals & narcotics)
  • Decreased use of instrument delivery (vacuum & forceps extraction)
  • Less likely for baby to stay or visit the NICU after delivery
  • Lower risk of postpartum depression
  • Quicker and shorter labors
  • More likelihood of spontaneous labor and/or delivery
  • Increased confidence and comfort for mother and partner
  • Objective information and support on hand from experienced birth professional
  • Higher success rate for breastfeeding
  • Faster postpartum recovery
  • Much higher rate of satisfaction of the birth experience for mothers and their partners

Sources:
Cochrane Review
DONA International
Childbirth Connection

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