Send me a message to book a free 30 minute chat to see if hiring a doula is right for you
“I used some of your breathing techniques in early labour – Thank you so much”
What is a Doula?
A doula, also known as a birth companion, birth coach or post-birth supporter, is a non-medical person who assists a woman before, during and after childbirth, to provide emotional support and physical help if needed. They may also provide support to the mother’s partner and family.
This is the wikipedia definition of a doula, although its correct, there’s a lot more to being a doula. Personally I don’t think it can be defined in one way, but hopefully the information below will give you an idea of how I can help.
“If a woman doesn’t look like a Goddess during birth someone isn’t treating her right” – Ina May Gaskin
Why hire a Doula?
You know what a birth doula is, but why should you hire one?
- Continuity of support through pregnancy, birth and postnatally (a familiar face is a must!)
- Support at home during early labour and before going to your chosen place of birth
- Support for birth partner (husband, partner, family member etc)
- Lower risk of caesarean births by up to 39%
- Increased likelihood of a spontaneous vaginal delivery by up to 15%
- Lower risk of instrumental birth
- Less need for pain relief and medication by up to 10%
- Lower rate of induction of birth
- Increased chance of a satisfying birth experience by 31%
- Shorter labour by about 41 minutes
- Higher success rate for establishing breastfeeding
- Continuing support at home after the baby is born, if required
- 38% decrease in the baby’s risk of a low 5 minute APGAR score
- A doula comes with a wealth of knowledge and will find evidence-based facts to your questions.
What I’ll do for you as a birth doula:
My aim is to make you feel safe, supported, loved and empowered to achieve your best birth possible, for you to take away happy memories of such a special day.
You will receive my physical, emotional and practical support before birth, during birth and afterwards until you are comfortable for me to leave.
I can support any birth type e.g. hospital, home, birth centre, water, active birth, VBAC, caesarean birth, birth after loss, physiological births or births using any pain relief options that you desire.
I will support your birth partner and will work alongside your midwife and any doctors. It’s in everyone’s best interests to get along and work together to achieve the desired outcome of a positive birth experience.
I will hold your hand, mop your brow, bring you drinks and snacks but I can also advise on optimal foetal positioning, how to sustain energy, active birth positions, breathing techniques for the various stages of birth, I can coach you through surges (contractions), offer affirmations and visualisations and explain anything you’re unsure of. I will be there for anything you need and to remind you that you are amazing, strong and a powerful person who can do this!
Birth doula package:
- An informal chat for around 30 minutes. We will decide if we want to go ahead and make the booking.
- Once confirmed I will come to your home for a pre-birth/antenatal visit, lasting around 2 hours, when you are approximately 30 weeks pregnant.
- Around 4 weeks before your due date I will visit again for around 2 hours, this will be another antenatal session where we will also discuss the logistics and practicalities for the big day.
- I will go on call 2 weeks before your due date until your baby is born. This means I will be no further than 90 minutes away from reaching you. I will join you at home as soon as you want me to, once the labour starts. I will accompany you to your chosen place of birth or stay with you at home if that’s what you’ve chosen.
- During the on-call period I provide unlimited phone support, emails, provide signposting and text messages.
- I will be with you throughout your labour and birth, whether that’s for 2 hours, 24 hours or more.
- After the baby is born I will stay with you until you are settled and happy for me to leave.
- Around 1 week after the birth I will visit you at home for a de-brief of the birth, to admire your beautiful baby and to see if there’s anything I can help with, this visit is normally about an hour in length.
As a birth doula I cover an area of around 1 hours drive around my home in North Chelmsford in Essex, but this can be discussed during our initial conversation and other areas will be considered.
“Giving birth should be your greatest achievement, not your greatest fear” – Jane Weideman