What You Need to Know
WHAT IS THE ROLE OF A DOULA?
A doula's role is to provide education, non-judgmental support and companionship; and to assist with newborn care and family adjustment, meal preparation, and light household tasks. The doula's goal is to facilitate the transition to parenthood by supplying reliable and factual information, as well as hands-on support and reassurance with the family.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF THE PRESENCE OF A DOULA DURING THE POSTPARTUM PERIOD?
The presence of doulas can increase breastfeeding initiation and continuation, can reduce the incidence of postpartum mood disorders, as well as increase new parents’ confidence in caring for the newborn.
CAN THE HELP OF A DOULA REDUCE THE CHANGE OF POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY?
Research has shown that new mothers who feel and are supported tend to report less problems with postpartum mental health. The doula can help as a second set of hands so the parents can nap or shower, as well as help around the house and with light meal preparation.
ARE DOULAS MEDICAL SUPPORT DURING POSTPARTUM CARE?
The doula's role is one of non-medical support which includes the practical and psycho-social needs of the family. The doula’s knowledge of the different changes in this period enhances communication both with the family and with support professionals. The doula is also available to make referrals for quality care professionals such as lactation consultants, pediatricians, as well as counselors and support groups when appropriate.