"What kind of care can I expect when using your services?"
As your doula, I am with you prenatally as you prepare for your baby, continuously as you labor and birth you child, and postnatally as your navigate the first couple weeks. Depending on your wishes, I can be close to you, if not in actual physical contact, nearly all of the time while you actively labor with your baby. I offer comfort measures such as labor massage and position techniques, and give emotional support, encouragement and honest praise. I can suggest ways to improve progress or ease discomfort and can help you communicate your needs to hospital staff and support decisions that you and your partner have made. As your doula, I look after partners as well, acting as a resource and guide and making sure their needs are met alongside yours.
"I'm planning on birthing at a hospital, should I use a doula"
Many of us are intimidated in medical institutions or have never stepped foot in a hospital, let alone being a patient in one. In addition to continous physical and emotional support, I can also help you understand what the doctor, midwife, or hospital staff are talking about. This can help avoid medically unnecessary interventions and make sure you have been informed of options and alternatives and are consenting to decisions made concerning your care. I can remind you of your desired wishes and support you in your decisions. As a knowledgable lay person I stay focused on you and your partner's needs throughout the birth. A large percentage of my clients give birth in a hospital, though some choose a birth center or home birth.
"Will having a doula attend my birth make my partner feel unnecessary?"
No! As your doula, I am supportive to both the laboring woman and her partner. Maybe you're wondering if having a doula will disturb the privacy and intimacy of labor and birth; in fact, a doula can help to protect privacy and create an intimate atmosphere in a busy setting. I play a valuable role in helping your partner become involved in their birth. Many partners feel having a doula present can ease the stress and anxiety some may feel going into labor and birth.
Does Insurance Cover a Doula?
It is possible to pay for my services with your FSA (Flexible Savings Account). Doula care is an out-of-network service and is sometimes covered under medical insurance, though that is usually a long and complicated process. Some have had success so I'd suggest giving it a shot! I can provide you with a detailed invoice that you can submit to your FSA or health insurance provider after the birth. This will get the ball rolling...