A birth doula’s main role is to guide and support pregnant people and their partners continuously through labour and birth. A doula is on call for you, arrives at your home or the hospital when you need her, and remains with you continuously until after your baby is born. She is trained and experienced in pregnancy and childbirth to provide practical, emotional and nonclinical support to mothers and their families. My aim is to maintain a calm and peaceful energy in the birthing person’s environment. When women are cared for during childbirth by a kind, gentle and reassuring presence, someone who knows them and respects their wishes, they feel safe and tend to give birth more quickly and easily. Therefore it is important that the doula and family feel comfortable with each other, so they can discuss together how the doula can best support them, including and involving the birthing partner at this special time.
‘Thank you for educating, empowering and supporting us through our birth journey, and for making the process enjoyable, exciting, magical and full of love. I will always be grateful we found you.’
A doula does not offer clinical or medical support as this is the role of the midwife and medical staff. A doula will complement and compliment the role of the midwife.
A doula can help you prepare a personal birth plan/wishes or birthing preferences, which is printed out and placed in your notes for your midwife and doctor to clearly see.
During labour, the doula supports mum by remaining calm and offering reassurance. She draws on her knowledge and experience as she encourages, comforts and empathises with mum. A doula will involve the partner, suggesting when to use particular positions, the bath or shower, and specific comfort measures, if required. With the presence of a birth doula, mum maintains a peaceful state of mind, with no feeling of pressure or panic.
A doula will not make decisions for you, or project personal preferences on you, but she will help you to get any information you need to make informed decisions. My goal is to help mum have a satisfying birth as she defines it.
‘Getting your support and expertise was one of the best decisions we have made.’
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you are interested in the various comfort techniques doulas use during labour.
‘I had hoped for a drug-free, natural birth but wasn’t sure if I would be able to do it – the emotional support provided by a doula is the most powerful drug I have experienced, without the side-effects! I couldn’t recommend Anne more. She has a wonderful calm, reassuring presence and is very knowledgeable about all aspects of birth.’