Motherhood is a beautiful thing, but it can also be an extremely difficult, emotional time for a woman. In almost 15% of births, a woman will experience postpartum depression. Dealing with postpartum in a time when you’re expected to be full of optimism, joy, and love for your new baby can be a struggle, as can juggling your usual duties with the needs of a newborn. Between a lack of sleep, your changing body (again!) and for new mothers especially, the anxiety of taking care of a whole new life, mothers can easily feel overwhelmed. For some women, hiring doula services might be the answer to getting “back on track” and getting the support and guidance they need. Doulas can be extremely useful as well if the mother doesn’t have her own mother present. Finding a doula service can be as easy as searching for “doula near me” and seeing the results, but we’ll discuss what you should be looking for, as well!
What is a Doula?
A doula can fall into two categories — a woman who supports and guides a pregnant woman while she gives birth, and a woman who supports and guides a new mother. In many cases, families will hire a doula for both the pregnancy and the postpartum period. The doula can help provide emotional, physical, and informational support to the parents in a new, exciting, and unknown time.
Doulas have recently become increasingly popular, and there’s much evidence that supports their positive effects on births for both the mother and the child. They’re not just there for the mother either — they can also offer support to the mother’s partner, in terms of the partner’s involvement and access to information.
What are the Advantages of Looking for Doula Near Me?
There’s tons of information on pregnancy, childbirth, and motherhood — perhaps too much. It might be easy for expecting mothers to feel overwhelmed and unsure about what directives to follow. A doula can help act as a funnel of information, providing evidence-based resources that can help mothers ask the questions and get the answers that will ultimately help them make the best decisions about their process.
A doula can also offer ideas for how to make labor more physically comfortable, suggesting breathing techniques, offering a comforting touch, and even figuring out how to get a baby who isn’t positioned quite right into their parent’s arms.
On an emotional level, doulas support families through the often emotional months of pregnancy, labor, and new parenthood. Having a confident, professional, nurturing, and tender person at their side can make a world of difference.
Postpartum, they can help other household members (grandparents, siblings, etc.) adjust to the new addition, and take care of some practical matters, like doing dishes, some light laundry, and even helping take care of some of the feeding.
It’s always good to look for “doula near me” when you search, so you can find someone local and easily accessible to where you are.
What Should I Look For in a Doula?
A doula with a certification from an organization is a surefire way to put your mind at ease. They’re accredited and likely the gold standard. It’s always important to meet with them face-to-face because you’ll get a better sense of how you relate to them and your overall instincts about their methods and how you’d feel about them being in your home.
You should, of course, inquire about their training and experience, what types of services they offer and what their fees look like. Your conversation will likely tell you a lot about how comfortable you feel with them and whether you think the range of services they offer is affordable for your budget.
Searching for “doula near me” can also ensure that you have someone local and nearby, which is another important factor.
If you’ve never considered a doula, we urge you to do so. They can be a really remarkable asset during this important process and the early days of your baby’s life.