If you’re a pregnant mother, you may be considering hiring a doula to assist you during labor and delivery. While you may have heard of the benefits of doulas, you may be wondering if it’s really worth the cost. The answer is a resounding yes!
Hiring a doula can make a world of difference in your experience of labor, birth, and postpartum recovery, and is a wise decision both for first-time mothers and subsequent children, even if you didn’t use a doula the first time.
To start, having a doula present has been shown to significantly reduce the likelihood of a Cesarean (C-section) delivery. A study published in the journal Birth found that women who had a doula present during labor and delivery had a 28% lower rate of Cesarean section than the control group of women who did not have a doula present. The doula-supported group also had a 12% shorter labor than the control group. (1)
Having a doula present can also help you to have a more positive birth experience. According to a review published in the journal BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, women who had a doula present during labor and delivery reported higher levels of satisfaction with their birth experience compared to those who did not have a doula. (2)
Finally, having a doula present can help to reduce stress and anxiety during labor and delivery. A study published in the journal Nursing Research found that women who had doula support during labor and delivery experienced lower levels of anxiety and stress than those who did not have a doula present. (3)
These findings make it clear that hiring a doula is a wise decision, both for first-time mothers and those who are having subsequent children, even if they did not use a doula the first time. A doula can help to reduce the likelihood of a Cesarean section, improve the overall satisfaction of the birth experience, and reduce stress and anxiety during labor and delivery.
So if you’re pregnant and considering hiring a doula, go for it! The benefits are clear, and you’ll be glad that you did.
1. Simkin, P., & Bolding, A. (2013). A randomised control trial of doula care. Birth, 40(4), 315–323. doi:10.1111/birt.12057
2. Sandall, J., Soltani, H., Gates, S., Shennan, A., & Devane, D. (2016). Midwife-led continuity models versus other models of care for childbearing women. BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, 16(1), 1–16. doi:10.1186/s12884-016-1064-y
3. Kroeger, M. E., Sakala, C., & Declercq, E. (2006). The presence of a doula during labor and birth. Nursing Research, 55(2), 99–103. doi:10.1097/00006199-200603000-00005