As we go through the process of pregnancy, especially our first ones, we are left wondering what to expect. What will our labor be like? How will we survive the nights alone with a newborn? How does this thing called parenthood work? A person who can help you get through this emotional time is a doula.
What is a doula? A doula is a trusted resource throughout pregnancy, labor and the postpartum period, and can provide up-to-date information about all of the choices available to you throughout each stage. Doulas can help you clarify the right choices for your care, assist you with your goals in birth, and provide amazing support once the baby arrives. I remember taking home my baby and saying, “now what?”. Overnight care is a part of a doulas package, it is a blessing for you to get rest and support during these first few months.
On-call labor support from a doula can be beneficial with all births, from planned c-sections to drug-free labors! There is a wealth of data showing that the presence of a doula can lead to better birth outcomes, fewer medical interventions, and shorter labors! Doulas never replace a partners’ role in assisting with birth, but can suggest movements and techniques that can bring additional comfort to the laboring person, and help families navigate possible and unexpected changes in planning as birth unfolds.
Postpartum care is specialized to each family’s needs but generally includes guidance on infant feeding, hands-on education for newborn care, safe and age appropriate sleep recommendations, emotional check-ins with parents, errands, and light chores around the house. Doulas are a wealth of information on resources for new parents, and can accompany them to appointments, or outings with a newborn.
As stated about, overnight care is one of the best gifts for families of a newborn. Whether parents are starting back to work, have other little ones to care for, or just feel exhausted-a night of sleep can make a world of difference. Overnight doula care is typically an 8-10 hour shift where parents can sleep, as a doula takes on all baby duties for the evening-feeding, changing, and soothing! This allows parents to get quality rest they deserve and wake up recharged, and ready to function once again!
Families of all kinds benefit from postpartum care! Often if support systems aren’t local or available or if a parent must return back to work soon after birth, a doula becomes even more valuable during the first weeks, and months home with a newborn!
So here I introduce you to Krista Sullivan, an amazing doula from Falmouth, Massachusetts that provides amazing care to parents. Krista screens all new parents for postpartum mood disorders, including Postpartum Depression and Anxiety. She maintains a reputable list of referral partners throughout New England including therapists, birth photographers, midwives, childbirth educators, chiropractors, acupuncturists, nannying services, new parent groups and more.
Postpartum care is an excellent gift for new parents, and is often purchased as a baby shower gift from other experienced parents who know the value of an extra hand once the baby arrives!
Doula services, although not covered by all insurances in Massachusetts yet, can be paid for with FSA/HSA funds. Monumental Beginnings Doula Services is one of few agencies in the area that is familiar with the process and accepts this type of payment.
You can find more about Krista on her website http://www.monumentalbeginningsdoula.com
And then of course there are those sweet newborn photos to keep as a memory for lifetimes!