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What a Birth Doula Can Do for Mothers

Nov 28, 2012 12:03PM ● By Myrriah Raimbault

“Birthing is the most profound initiation to spirituality a woman can have,” says Robin Lim, a midwife and 2011 CNN woman of the year. To make the best of childbirth, a birth doula can help women conceptualize their ideal birth experience.

A doula assists a pregnant woman in writing a personalized birth plan. During pregnancy, the purpose of a doula is to offer encouragement through emotional times, answer questions about childbirth, provide guidance about beneficial classes and administer comfort during the entire term of childbirth and postpartum care.

The doula is not a replacement for the woman’s partner or medical professionals, but an additional caretaker that provides strength and support. According to DONA International, the world’s largest professional doula association, benefits of doula care include 25 percent shorter labors, 45 percent fewer cesarean sections, 40 percent fewer epidurals and a 30 to 50 percent decrease in the need for forceps, vacuum extraction and Pitocin, a synthetic hormone used to induce labor.


Myrriah Raimbault is the owner of Peaceful Birth Haven. For more information, visit Dona.org.

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