The word “doula” literally means “women’s servant” in Greek. And that’s still at the heart of what a modern UK doula does – to serve and support women in childbirth. More and more women are choosing to have a doula in the delivery room, and for good reason.
What is a doula?
Doulas are professional labor assistants trained in childbirth. They provide emotional, educational, and physical support to mothers who are pregnant, in labor, or recently gave birth. Some of the services they offer are:
- Breast-feeding help
- Providing encouragement, comfort, and emotional reassurance
- Providing physical comfort through assistance with breathing, massage, and other relaxation techniques
- Educating women with information about birthing procedures and medical terms. In addition, they also provide information on what happens during labor and more.
- Helps facilitate communication between hospital staff and their patient
- Acts as mediator between the expectant mother and other parties
- Offering support and guidance for loved ones
On top of these, doulas also offer post-birth assistance for issues like postnatal depression symptoms.
The Benefits of Having Doula Support
Some studies about the benefits of doulas have associated the service with:
- Reduction in negative childbirth experiences
- Decrease in how long labor time is
- Lower use of pain medicine during labor
- Low incidences of C-sections
Anecdotally, many women have also described positive experiences with doula support. Many mothers feel alone and overwhelmed during childbirth. Doulas helps ease their anxiety. Not only do they offer support to mothers, they also provide comfort to the rest of the family.
How does having a doula affect the father’s role?
This is a very common question among families interested in the services of a doula. The short answer is, doulas will never relegate co-parents to third wheel status. Instead, they complement the role.
With a doula as part of the birthing team, partners can focus on welcoming their child and supporting their wife instead of being a labor coach. In addition, doulas can step in if the spouse needs a break and offer emotional help as needed.
The bottom line is that a doula does not steal the spotlight away from either spouse. Instead, she takes the worries out of their hands so they can focus on each other and their infant on the way.
Talking for Therapy: Doula Support Available 24/7
Not all women are fortunate enough to have a doula near them. Talking for Therapy recognizes this need. We’ve made doula services available wherever you may be in the world.
Our highly-trained professional UK doula is available 24 hours a day, every day of the week. All you need to do is give us a call to set up a session. Every mother deserves as much mental and emotional support during this complex time. You can trust us to be there for you. Book your appointment today and let’s talk about YOU.