What is a doula? A Labor Doula is an experienced professional who provides continuous labor support, both physical and emotional, to the birther and partner.
What is a doula not...? A Doula is not a medical professional, and does not give medical advice, but will help you ask the right questions. A doula does not perform medical procedures. A doula does not make any decisions on your behalf, but will help you understand your options. A doula does not communicate your preferences to your birth team, but will help you communicate them. Who does a doula support? Babe & Bundle Birth Services is available to all individuals and families needing support during fertility, birth, and postpartum. It is an honor to support married couples, religious families, secular families, single parents, LGBTQ+ families, surrogates, adoption, VBACs, HBACs, low-risk, high-risk, TTC couples, abortion needs, and many, many others.
What are the benefits of a doula? In labor, doulas are statistically proven to improve outcomes:
31% decrease in the use of Pitocin*
28% decrease in the risk of C-section*
12% increase in the likelihood of a spontaneous vaginal birth*
9% decrease in the use of any medications for pain relief
14% decrease in the risk of newborns being admitted to a special care nursery
34% decrease in the risk of being dissatisfied with the birth experience*
Does a doula replace my partner? Absolutely not. Doulas know birth. Your partner knows you. Together, we make the best possible team to support you and help you navigate the journey of your birth. Doulas help partners as well. Often times, when you need support in labor, the partner wants to help but doesn't know how. This is where the Doula can help the partner know what to do when, so the partner also has confidence in his/her role during the birth. And as questions arise during labor, the Doula can reassure the partner when things are normal, or when something needs attention. Doulas can also help partners navigate the confusing options that come up during birth. And Doulas can give partners a break if they want one. Are doulas just for hippies? Nope! Doulas are for anyone who wants one. Doulas primarily attend hospital births, and work with all types of parents and families. Doulas have different styles and different strengths, and the right Doula for you will support you in preparing for your ideal birth.
What is a birth plan? Birth plan, wish list, birth philosophy - however you call it, it is your vision, plan, and statement of preferences for labor, birth, and those first precious hours postpartum. Prior to birth, it is shared with your midwife or doctor so they understand your wishes, what you don't want, and your preferences if presented with a variation of normal. As your Doula, I will help you to develop your birth plan and use it as my compass to support you on the day. What if I want an epidural? That's great! Knowing what you want for your birth is the first step to being empowering in your choices. While an epidural will relieve intense sensations, it cannot calm your mind. As your Doula, my role is to help you feel educated, prepared and confident before labor begins. During labor, I help you find your rhythm and use comfort measures in early labor so when are ready for pain medication, you will have progressed far enough along and not be sent home. If you choose to use pain medication, I will still stay with you and continue to provide emotional and informational support. Modern epidurals are gradual and you can control how much medication you receive. You may still feel sensations and you will still need physical support for comfort and to help with optimal positioning.