Doulas and Midwives

nurse with babyWhat is a Doula, and how are they different from Midwives ?

A doula is a woman experienced in childbirth who provides advice, information, emotional support, and physical comfort to a mother before, during, and just after childbirth. Many women are choosing to work with a doula to help them prepare for their birth, to help with labor and delivery, and to help at home after the baby has arrived.

Working with a doula can be comforting to expectant families because the doula understands the physiology of birth and the emotional needs of a woman in labor. Also, the doula facilitates communication between the laboring woman, her partner, and clinical careproviders. The acceptance of doulas in maternity care is growing rapidly with the recognition of their important contribution to the improved physical outcomes and emotional well-being of mothers and infants.

A midwife provides prenatal care, delivery of the baby, care of the mother post-partum, and newborn care. The midwife is responsible for the safety of mother and baby. Some kinds of midwives also provide family planning, annual exams, and other kinds of well-woman gynecology.

The difference between a midwife and a doula is that the doula is responsible for emotional support and education, and not for medical care. A doula, for example, would not listen to the baby's heart or do a vaginal exam on the mother.

Both doula and midwife care have been shown to improve outcomes for mother and baby.

 

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Doulas and Midwives

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36 comments

  1. Ashley says:

    I love my midwives so far! Probably won’t need the doula because we’re doing Bradley, hubby will get put to work.

  2. My first pregnancy I used a midwife, she was awesome! But my two other pregnancies I had to use doctors, because I was high risk. The midwife was more relaxing and I had a enjoyable experience with her.

  3. Nat says:

    I think more women need an advocate in the labor and delivery room! if your hubby wont read “husband coached childbirth” then a doula is the next best thing!

  4. now i know the difference

  5. Dario says:

    interesting info

  6. Very interesting information I didn’t know the difference but now I do!

  7. Christina says:

    I had a midwife for my first 6 babies, I really liked her. The only issue where I went is that you never know who is going to deliver your baby. This time i will not have a midwife

  8. KEIYONDA says:

    IM NOT SURE IF I WOULD DO A MIDWIFE…I’VE DONE REGULAR DOCS BEFORE SO MAYBE I’LL STICK WIT MY FOR SURE THING.

  9. stephanie says:

    I’m pregnant with my second child now and after having the first one using a midwife I already know I’m going to have a midwife again this time. It was a great experience!!!

  10. Ja says:

    I would like to have a midwife but there isn’t one in the hospital I have to go to. I heard having a midwife is really nice though.

  11. Marilyn says:

    I still haven’t decided what to do.

  12. Marina says:

    I decided to use a midwife. If any complications arise, there are few Obstetricians in the group that can oversee any problems. Overall, I get more time at my OB visits with the midwife than I would get with MD. Also during delivery midwives are more there through the labor than MD who just come over when pushing starts. I used to work as L&D nurse and would rather prefer a midwife and receive the attention & support.

  13. My Obstetrician / Gynecologist will be delivering my baby this time around. He is a very compassionate physician, super sweet and simply the best.
    I opted for midwives with my first birth and the experience was good. They were great at their job, but I felt like another number being pushed through the door.
    I guess the main goal is to find someone you feel comfortable with.

  14. Amanda Beall says:

    My husband and I just interviewed and fell in love with the midwife we will be using for our child’s birth in September. The midwife has two assistants and 1 doula 🙂

  15. Our hospital only has one midwife and I really like. If I could afford a doula, I might hire one, but we can’t.

  16. Janice says:

    I did not have a mid wife. I thought they were a thing of the past.

  17. idk who i want in the room during my delivery

  18. annie says:

    Thinking doula with delivery at the hospital. Need an advocate on my side only me and my husband. Still time to think about it.

  19. I’m not choosing to have either. My fiance, mom and sister will be in the room 🙂

  20. Angelwings says:

    I choose to go with a midwife all the way through my pregnancy, I have not once regretted my decision to do so. MD’s in my area are scary and do not listen very well. They keep shoving their opinions on the expectant mothers its just not right in my book.

  21. ErinF says:

    I plan on enlisting a midwife and doula for a homebirth. If the pregnancy becomes too risky for a homebirth, a professional advocate like a doula will be great to have at delivery.

  22. Kevryn says:

    I am going to be going back to school to become a certified nurse midwife. i am so excited. I will first be a RN hopefully in labor and deliver. I loved all my nurses and my midwife. they were so helpful and supportive. i want to be that for someone as well

  23. Hope says:

    We won’t be using a doula (I have family for my support), but we may use a midwife. We’re currently in the process of deciding between midwife and hospital. I’m all for having a home birth for a midwife, waiting on my partner to decide what he wants to do.

  24. megsnshrimp says:

    I am having the same midwife that delivered me and other siblings. We were all born at home, two with a different midwife, and my dad did one by himself! My sister used her too for the first grandbaby. So fun!

  25. Julie says:

    I am not using either one of these. I think my doctors, my husband, and me can handle this.

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