Working in the birth industry, it’s easy for me to take doulas for granted. But the truth is, many moms don’t hire doulas because they either don’t know about doulas or they don’t think they need one!
After years of photographing births of every type, I’ve learned that doulas are incredibly helpful no matter how you give birth. However, most mamas who give birth at home are already aware of the benefits of a doula. So for all you moms who plan to give birth in a hospital, here are 5 reasons to hire a doula!
1. Doulas are dedicated to one person: YOU
If you give birth in a hospital, you likely won’t have the undivided attention of anyone except your partner. Doctors and nurses come in and out to check on you, but they aren’t there to help you through each contraction. Doulas stay by your side through it all, often offering tips and tricks they’ve learned over the years.
Even if you have an incredibly supportive partner, you might end up separated at some point. Especially if you have a C-section or if there are any complications with your baby. Often your partner will go with the baby, leaving you on your own. If you have a doula, you have someone by your side the entire time. (Even if everything goes perfectly, your partner may need to eat something or use the bathroom! They can switch off with the doula so you have support all along the way.)
2. Doulas are your advocate
Doulas will help you fight for what you want (within reason). Though they can’t give medical advice as they
ren’t medical professionals, they’ll stand up for your wishes. That might mean helping you explain to the doctor that you want to try natural techniques to speed up labor, or advocating for you to the hospital staff that you really are ready for the epidural. They can also help you make more informed decisions by providing you with important information about procedures your doctor or midwife is suggesting.
3. Doulas aren’t your partner
Yes, your partner is probably supportive and wants to help you. But your partner is probably going through some pretty intense emotions too! They’ll do their best, but they’re not experts. Doulas are trained to take care of you. They are the experts, and they’ll do whatever you need. That means you don’t have to worry about making them mad or hurting their feelings. They’ve seen it all before! Your partner on the other hand, may not be quite so on top of things.
4. Doulas support your partner
While your doula is focused on you, they are also supporting your partner. They can show your partner how to help you more effectively. They can answer questions your partner has. And by being your primary support person, they allow your partner to experience the birth without feeling overwhelmed. This is especially true when moms have long or difficult labors. Your partner needs to be able to care for themselves to be able to be there for you, and doulas give them the ability to do that.
5. Doulas help lower birth risks
It’s a fact that having a doula decreases your risk of an emergency C-section. Studies have also shown that women who use doulas have shorter labors, were more likely to not need pain medication, and their babies have high Apgar scores. No one is entirely sure why doulas affect birth so much – at least scientists aren’t sure. As someone who has been around doulas, I can see what a profound effect they have!
If you’re expecting a baby, whether it’s your first or your fifth, consider hiring a doula! It’s more affordable than you think, and they are such an asset to have.
There are many doulas here in the Oklahoma City area, including at the Thrive Mama Collective! Don’t be afraid to call around and interview more than one doula. Since they will be your primary support, you need to find the right one for you! Today’s post only covered labor and delivery doulas, but you can also hire postpartum doulas for help after the baby arrives! Basically doulas are great for every occasion
Click here to read up on birth classes, in addition to hiring a doula! :: http://taviaredburnphotography.com/2016/12/17/do-you-need-a-birth-class/