A doula may play a significant role in pregnant women’s nutrition, physical and mental wellness. Doulas can aid the mother in preparing for the new baby, as well as during labor and delivery and after the baby is delivered. While working as a doula can be a stressful job, it can also be quite rewarding. This article will explain what it means to be a doula, what training is necessary, and the obligations that come with this medical position.
Definition of a doula
A doula, sometimes can be referred as a “labor companion” or a “birth helper,” is a woman who gives physical, emotional, and educational assistance to mothers before, during, and after childbirth. Doulas are well-versed in the medical aspects of labor and delivery. Doulas, on the other hand, are not trained to give medical help, unlike labor and delivery nurses. Their duty is to make the mother’s labor and delivery as pleasant, healthy, and emotionally rewarding as possible.
Types of doula
- Birth doula: The majority of doulas are birth doulas. They help the woman during her pregnancy, as well as for a few months before and after she gives birth.
- Antepartum doula: If the woman has been placed on bed rest or is having a high-risk pregnancy, an antepartum doula will give comfort and help. During this stressful time for the mother, their practical and emotional assistance can be quite valuable.
- Postpartum doula: A postpartum doula can help a woman who is feeling overwhelmed in the weeks following her child’s delivery. A postpartum doula gives emotional support to the mother as well as assistance with cleaning, cooking, and infant care so that the mother may relax.
Training & Qualification
To be a professional doula with jobs at the public hospitals or private clinics, you don’t need a high school certificate or a college degree, but you do need to go through training if you want to be certified. Doulas of North America grants permission for the majority of doula training programs in the United States (DONA). The Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association (CAPPA) oversees certificates across the world. These training programs are usually a combination of online classes and hands-on workshops. During birth training, you may learn a variety of topics, including:
- How to Offer Solace and Support
- Pregnancy and labor physiology
- Exercise and a proper diet are essential.
- Standard birthing methods
- Complications of pregnancy
Regardless of where you reside and who hires you, certification may or may not be required. Nonetheless, you should think about being certified. It not only provides you additional possibilities while seeking an official medical job, but it may also increase the confidence of potential clients in your abilities.
Main responsibilities in different partum periods
Doula has different responsibilities within each partum period. Here is the detail of doula’s role for specific:
1. Prenatal period
Here are the main roles of doula in the Prenatal period:
Schedule meeting with customers
Doulas usually meet with their customers many months before the due date of the baby. During those months, they will come to know one another so that the client feels comfortable communicating openly and honestly with the doula. This gives the doula the opportunity to answer questions and address any concerns that their client may have.
While doulas are not qualified to provide medical advice or assistance, they are usually knowledgeable enough about medical processes to provide important information. It is customary for doulas to offer their contact information with their clients so that they may be reached at any time to answer queries.
Establish a complete birth plan
A complete birth plan is a one-page declaration of the mother’s desires when labor begins. This covers who the mother wants to have there at the delivery, if fetal monitoring is desired, and whether the mother wishes to be given pain relievers. Doulas may assist their clients in considering all of their alternatives and documenting their preferences ahead of time.
Teaching necessary techniques for pregnant women
Doulas can teach their clients relaxation and breathing methods to assist alleviate some of the tension and discomfort associated with childbirth. These strategies may be beneficial even in the weeks preceding childbirth.
2. During the partum period
Here are the main roles of doula during the partum period
Stay with client in the duration of labor
From the time the client enters into the hospital until the baby is born, the doula will be with their client providing support and encouragement. During labor, doulas may answer questions their clients may have, as well as practice breathing, relaxation and massage techniques when appropriate.
Taking the client’s side during birth and delivery
By the time the client is ready to give birth, doulas know their clients’ wishes and can help ensure they are followed. This is especially important if the client is unable to express these wishes due to pain or medication.
Helping the birth partner
The birth partner of the client might be a love partner, a close acquaintance, or a family. A doula’s role is to assist them both. Doulas, in particular, can urge the birth partner to assist in comforting the client. Doulas can also answer questions from the birth partner or step in if the birth partner wishes to observe.
3. Postpartum period
Here are the main roles of doula at the Postpartum period:
After-discharge visits to the client
Doulas may visit the client’s home for a few weeks after they leave the hospital to continue offering practical and emotional assistance. This might be minor cleaning, dinner preparation, or simply conversing. Doulas may even care for the infant personally so that the client may relax.
Supplying postpartum assistance
Postpartum doulas can visit their clients on a regular basis throughout the duration of the postpartum period, which can last up to six months. During this period, the doula will assist both the client and the family in adjusting to having a new baby in the house. This involves giving information to assist the client in making child care decisions, as well as fostering communication between the client and carers as needed.
In general, a doula may help pregnant women maintain their physical and mental health. Doulas may help the mother prepare for the new baby, as well as during labor and delivery and afterwards. While working as a doula can be demanding, it can also be quite gratifying. This page will define doula, what training is required, and the responsibilities that come with this medical job.