Encouraging Birthing Transformations
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
WHAT IS A DOULA AND WHY SHOULD I CHOOSE TO USE ONE FOR MY BIRTH?
Doulas provide continuous support and care throughout pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period and answer any questions or concerns you may have throughout the childbearing year. Essentially, a doula supports your family through the transition to parenthood and provides evidence based information and resources to ensure you are able to make informed decisions. Doulas do not provide any clinical care for their clients.
Choosing a doula ensures that you are supported throughout the childbearing year by someone you know and have a professional relationship with throughout this intimate and personal journey. Doulas can provide the continuity of care that other care providers are not always able to. The doula is able to focus on your emotional, spiritual, and parental needs, while other care providers are responsible for your health and safety. Doulas support both birth givers and partners to navigate the new experiences of pregnancy, birth and the postpartum period. Authentic Heart Listening Doula Services provides birth doula care to families in Leduc, Edmonton and the surrounding areas.
HOW IS A DOULA DIFFERENT FROM A MIDWIFE?
Unlike a midwife, a doula does not provide any clinical care for clients. A midwife is responsible for the health, safety, and care of the newborn and birth giver during pregnancy, labour, and postpartum. Most midwives and doulas support your family through the transition to parenthood and provide information and resources to ensure you are able to make informed decisions. In contrast to midwives, doulas provide care for your entire family helping you identify what your birthing needs are and how to advocate for these needs effectively. Doulas support your emotional, and spiritual needs and midwives care for your physical health needs. Essentially, doulas witness and honour the sacredness of birth and hold the birth space for the family while midwives make sure everyone is healthy and safe.
Should you hire a doula even though you have a midwife though? Absolutely! Doulas can help you identify what your birth preferences are and will help you identify what your changing needs are should any unexpected circumstances occur or alternative care providers be required. Midwives rarely work out what your birth preferences are with you but do provide you options. Doulas work extensively with you to discuss your birth preferences and prepare you for a variety of scenarios should you need to change plans. Both doulas and midwives can work well together to care for your family during your pregnancy, birthing, and postpartum time. Check out my Blog or click on the question mark at the beginning of this section for a more extensive answer to this question.
WHERE DO YOU SUPPORT FAMILIES IN BIRTH?
I will support birth givers choosing home birth, birth at a birth centre or hospital with an obstetrician, physician or midwife in attendance as primary care providers. While it is important to recognize that many birth givers prefer free birth over a caregiver attended birth, unfortunately, I am unable to provide doula services to anyone choosing this path for their family at this time.
DO YOU OFFER POSTPARTUM SUPPORT?
Yes, I do provide additional postpartum support to my clients following the birth of their babies. As a La Leche League Leader, I can provide information and support to families who require extra information regarding infant feeding. Furthermore, as a mother of three I have extensive parenting experience and can help families get in touch with their own intuitive wisdom innate to all parents, and support you through any bumps you might encounter at the beginning.
"If we are to heal the planet, we must begin by healing birth."
Agnes Sallet Von Tannenburg
EVIDENCE BASED ARTICLES AND LINKS
Here are some websites for prospective families to check out for information specific to pregnancy, birth and postpartum, including evidence for doulas, breastfeeding information, pelvic floor health, and ideal fetal positioning.
Ultrasound benefits and risks: