Here are some of the more frequent questions I get asked…
Is a Doula a trained medical professional?
No, Doulas are not medically trained professionals. While I am CPR certified for emergency situations only, I am not trained to do anything medical, such as blood pressure, reading fetal heart monitor printouts, checking how dilated you are, etc. I like to explain to people that OBs/Midwives work from the waist down and I work from the waist up. I am trained in the art of birth, providing emotional and physical support during the beauty of your birth.
I’m planning a home birth- do I need a Doula or Midwife or both?
You would definitely need both. As a Doula, I don’t “catch” or do anything medical. I’ll provide encouragement and physical comfort techniques, but the Midwife would provide all the medical support needed for you and your baby.
Do I need a Doula if I really love my doctor/Midwife?
Yes! A Doula is a part of your birth team. Providers in a hospital tend to have other patients giving birth at the same time or rest while you are laboring, only checking in once in a awhile, since they are usually on a on-call shift. I stay with you the entire time you need and want me there.
I’ll have my partner there, why do I need a Doula?
I wrote a great article addressing this question that you can read here!
What happens if I end up with an epidural? Do I still need you? Do you leave?
That’s fine! Doulas aren’t just for medication free/vaginal births! I continue to stay with you during that time. Sometimes they will let me stay in the room while you are getting the epidural (though usually everyone is asked to leave). But I will stay after insertion to make sure you are comfortable and resting, get anything you need, answer any questions you may have, make sure you switch positions to help bring baby down, help get your partner settled, and so much more!
What if I have a c-section? Do I still need you? Do you leave?
Whether a Cesarean birth is planned or not planned, I’m here to still provide comfort and support through the whole process. I’ll stay with you beforehand to help with things such as helping you relax, provide comfort techniques as needed, get anything you need, and answer questions. During the birth, a few things can happen. It depends on your provider and policies, but some suggestions are: I can either wait for you to be done and in recovery, be in the room with you as your person, or wait until baby is born – partner goes with baby – I step in to stay with you while the OB finishes working on you. Afterwards, I can help get you and your partner set up in your room, assist with breastfeeding, and more.
What is the difference between a Postpartum Doula and a Baby Nurse?
A baby nurse focuses solely on the care and attention to the baby. As a Postpartum Doula, my focus is on the baby, you, and the family as a whole. I help you get settled and comfortable, help take care of things around the house so you don’t have to worry about it (and then you can get much needed rest and focus on bonding with your baby!), answer any questions you may have about recovery and/or your baby, helping your family adjust to their newest addition, help care for the family – just to name a few things.
Does insurance cover Doula services?
You will have to call your insurance company and find out. A few insurance companies are starting to, though it’s a bit of a process. If your insurance company states they do and you decide to use them, I still require payment up front to me and you will need to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement. Most people’s HSA/FSA will cover the cost of a Doula.
I’m not sure I can afford a Doula. What can I do?
I do offer payment plans to help families. You also find several tips here on how you can save up for Doula Services.