Frequently Asked Questions About Doulas
“Having Tekara as our doula was one of the best parts of my birthing experience! I had a piece of mind the entire way having her there, knowing that even though this was my first birth, I had someone who made me feel safe and in control! She included my partner and my stepdaughter throughout the entire process which was amazing. Also, she spent countless hours with me during actual labor and was exceptional at calming me, caring for me, and ensuring that the process was going well”
– A.D, Doula Client
Frequently Asked Questions About Doulas
Are doulas midwives? What exactly DO you do?
Doulas are non-medical birth workers, while midwives provide clinical care and support. As a doula, I attend and support the birthing family before, during, and after the birth of a baby. I deliver emotional support from home to birthing location, easing the transition. My role is to encourage and promote, self-advocacy, informed choice, and communications between you and your care providers. I spend our time with you sifting through information, providing resources, and attending to your emotional and spiritual needs in preparation for your transition to parenthood. Unlike OBs and Midwives, doulas are present with you for the entirety of your labor and birth. This continuity of care of a hallmark of doula support.
What are the benefits of a doula?
Studies have shown having a doula at your birth:
- Results in shorter labors with fewer complications
- Reduces negative feelings about one’s childbirth experience
- Reduces the need for Pitocin, forceps or vacuum extraction, and cesarean birth
- Reduces mother’s request for pain medication and/or epidural
- Increases the likelihood of a spontaneous vaginal birth
Will hiring a doula replace my partner or other support persons?
Not at all! Your partner and support persons have a long-term close relationship with you while your doula is trained and experienced at providing support. Together, we are the ultimate support team. As a doula, I provide you are your partner with the tools necessary to support you and your choices. The presence of a doula is meant to put both birthing person and partner’s mind at ease, and provide breaks when necessary.
Aren’t doulas for only people who want to have a natural/ unmedicated birth at home?
Absolutely not! As your doula, I support you and your choices for your birth. It is not my role to decide the type of birth you will have. Doulas are meant to provide informational, emotional, and physical support and stand behind the decisions you make. I will help you become informed on your options for birth, including pain management, birth location, procedures, and more. If you chose a medicated birth, I will assist you in natural pain management before the medication is administered.
I’m planning to have a VBAC. Do you support VBAC families?
Absolutely! I enjoy working with VBAC families and ensuring they have a supportive network, are knowledgeable of all the risks and benefits of a VBAC, and are equipped with useful tools and encouragement throughout the process.
How can I pay for a doula? Aren’t doula expensive?
Deciding to have a doula is a financial investment but it is also a personal one. Whether you’re experiencing your first pregnancy or your fifth, each experience is unique and leaves a lasting imprint on your and your family. Having a trained professional, familiar with a variety of birth settings, procedures, most up-to-date research and evidence, and the amazing ability to put you at ease, is worth the investment. With that being said, prices range for doula services, depending on the region, experience, and packages offered. Ask your potential doula about gift certificates friends and families can purchase on your behalf (they make great baby shower gifts) or payments plans- both of which I offer.
When should I hire a doula?
It is never “too early” or “too late” to bring a doula on to your birth team. Begin interviewing or reaching out to doulas as soon as you know you want one. Many doulas limit the number of clients they take each month, so the earlier you reach out, the better your chance of securing your due date on their calendars. This also allows ample time for you and your doula to get to know each other and build your relationship. Compatibility with your doula is a key component to our care. Take your time in selecting a doula and select someone who makes you feel heard, validated, supported, and valued.