What is a birth doula?

A very broad definition is someone who provides physical, emotional, and intellectual support for a woman and her family during pregnancy, childbirth, and the initial postpartum season. Birth doulas offer physical support, massage, and non-medical pain management techniques to keep the laboring mother comfortable and focused throughout her labor and delivery. Read more here!

What is a postpartum doula?

A postpartum doula supports you and your family as you transition into parenthood. After your baby is born a postpartum doula lends her hand with breastfeeding, diaper changing, bathing baby, and much more. She is also there to support you by taking care of baby while you nap or get something to eat. Read about all a postpartum doula can do for you here.

What is the difference between a midwife and a doula?

A midwife is the mother’s care provider, serving in place of the traditional obstetrician. Midwives provide all the medical care during prenatal visits, delivery, and postpartum. They are the ones who actually deliver the baby.
A doula provides physical and emotional support during childbirth. Doulas do not provide any medical care such as vaginal exams, monitoring fetal heart tones, and checking blood pressure. They do not speak on behalf of the woman, but do give the partner and mother the tools and knowledge they need to make informed decisions during childbirth. Doulas are meant to remain at the mother’s side without interruption, whereas midwives, especially those in hospitals, are not necessarily with the mother constantly.

Does a doula replace the role of my partner?

No! That connection between partners is invaluable in the birthing room. The partner knows the mother in a way that no one else does and can provide insight on how to best support her. Adding a doula to the birth team can greatly enhance the birth experience for both the mother and the partner. Read more here!

How do I talk to my partner about hiring a doula?

While it’s easy to focus solely on the mom when discussing childbirth, we all know that our partners play an important role providing love, encouragement, and support. What’s more—this is their birth experience, too! For some, telling your partner you want to hire a doula can be a difficult conversation. Whether budget, or sensitivity around “roles” during labor, or just a general unfamiliarity about what a doula provides, we want to help you share with your partner the great ways a doula supports both the mom and the partner during birth! Check out our in-depth blog post about partners and doulas here.

What if I am having a medicated birth?

An empowered, successful birth (as defined by the mother) is ultimately what the doula wants to help the mother achieve. A woman’s need for support and encouragement does not stop even with an epidural. An excellent doula knows how to support you in whatever scenario, and with whatever type of support you require. Read more about the specific ways a doula can help in a medicated birth here.

What if I have a c-section?

The support a woman needs during a c-section birth is no different than any other type of birth. Your doula is trained to support any mom through a c-section whether it is planned or not. The physical and emotional guidance your doula brings is invaluable. We love this in-depth article on doulas and c-sections.

What makes working with a doula agency different from hiring an individual?

The benefits of working with an agency abound! Our unique partnership model means you automatically receive two doulas to work with you throughout your pregnancy. This team ensures that you will never have a stranger as a back-up in the event you need one and you will always have a doula who can fully support you regardless of the length of your labor. Because of our commitment to excellent care, you are guaranteed to know the doula at your birth and you will leave feeling confident in your birth support team and the relationship you have built. Your needs come first, and you can count on our team for quality care. Read more about our mission as an agency!

What kind of training do your doulas have?

There are many different avenues for doulas to achieve certification. At Nashville Doula Services, our doulas hold a variety of trainings and certifications. This helps us to bring a full range of perspective and education to the mothers we serve. As a team, we bring our diversity of background and knowledge and create a cohesive standard of practice as we learn and grow together. Check out our doula’s bios to learn more!

What is included in your birth package?

Our birth package includes a free consultation to meet some of our doula team, two prenatal visits where you will construct a birth plan, review labor sign posts, practice positions, comfort techniques for delivery, etc., continous support during labor, and one postpartum visit. Read more on our birth service page.

Do you offer any additional services?

Beyond birth services, we also offer postpartum doula care, private and group childbirth education classes, and placenta encapsulation. We also partner with great birth professionals in our community. Check it out under our resources.

When should I hire a doula?

We welcome clients at any stage of their pregnancy. If you’re researching birth options in your first or second trimester, we encourage you to go ahead and schedule a consultation. In fact, you can learn more about the great benefits of hiring a doula early in your pregnancy on our blog. Late in your pregnancy? You can still get the same high-quality service packed in the last few weeks of your pregnancy. But if this is you, don’t delay! Schedule a consultation to learn more about how we can assist you in labor and postpartum care.

What are my next steps for hiring Nashville Doula Services?

  1. Contact us to schedule your consultation.
  2. Attend consultation.
  3. Hire Nashville Doula Services and sign contract!
  4. Your doulas will contact you to set up your prenatal visits.
  5. Sign up for a childbirth education class.
  6. Contact your doulas with any questions or concerns during pregnancy.
  7. Confidently await baby’s arrival.
  8. Call birth team when it is labor time.
  9. Schedule postpartum doula support.
  10. Enjoy your growing family!