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Frequently Asked Questions!
A postpartum doula is a trained professional that specializes in immediate postpartum support to mamas/families within the first three months following a birth. Postpartum doulas offer varying levels of support depending on the specific needs of each family. However, postpartum doulas are trained to identify and provide support around postpartum issues such as breastfeeding, sleep support, nutrition, mental and emotional wellness, physical healing and more.
Recovering from giving birth, whether vaginally or via a Cesarean (-c section) can be a long and challenging process. Research shows that postpartum doulas have a positive impact on postpartum adjustment including reducing perinatal mood disorders, improving breastfeeding success and increasing self-confidence.
By hiring a postpartum doula, families benefit from the added advantage of professional care for not only the infant, but the postpartum mama and partner as well.
Any mama (parent) who would like a little extra help once the baby is born, could benefit from a postpartum doula. However, the services of a postpartum doula would especially benefit you (and your partner) if:
- You are first time parents or new parents with limited experience with newborns
- You are parents expecting multiples and/or caring for multiple children
- You have little to no local support
- You are at risk of experiencing postpartum depression and anxiety
- You experienced a premature birth, a difficult delivery and/or a Cesarean birth
- You are a mama who has been on bed rest throughout pregnancy
- You are preparing to return to work after maternity (parental) leave
- You need support with breastfeeding, pumping, bottle feeding and/or formula feeding
- You have a baby with special needs
- You have a baby with colic or reflux
- You need support with newborn sleep practices
- You are experiencing postpartum mental health issues including baby blues, postpartum depression and other postpartum mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs)
- You need resources for additional providers such as nutritionists, therapists, chiropractors, pelvic floor therapists etc
There are many differences between baby/night nurses and postpartum doulas. Specifically, baby/night nurses strictly focus on and care for the baby. Postpartum doulas provide physical, educational and emotional support to the mama and partner, as well as care for the newborn baby. Postpartum doulas are trained to identify the early signs and symptoms of postpartum mood disorders and can help families navigate getting the support they need during this postpartum transition.
It is wise to have a postpartum plan and request postpartum support in your second or third trimester, to ensure that you find a good fit with your postpartum doula and have time reserved on the calendar of the professional that you prefer. Many expectant parents reserve care for several weeks at a time while they are still pregnant.
Within the first few weeks of birth, you and your family can benefit the most from having a knowledgeable postpartum doula providing support in your home. Having a postpartum doula in your home in the first couple of days can make things more manageable, as you are adjusting and learning about your new baby, your body is adjusting to the arrival of your breast milk and recovery. In the early days, a postpartum doula can also help partners and family members understand how to make the best team for your postpartum care.
Many families may request support from a postpartum doula during weeks 3-8, to provide support with problem-solving issues with infant sleeping and feeding and assist with providing parents with some much needed rest.
Postpartum doulas often fill the gaps in family support and provide support where help is needed until families are confident and doing well on their own.
A great way to help pay for your postpartum doula services is to request that postpartum doula services be a part of your baby shower wish list. You can get creative in adding postpartum doula support to your registry, having a postpartum doula fund and/or purchasing postpartum support gift certificates. Contact us for additional support regarding this.
Daun of a New Day LLC, located in Baltimore, MD, provides in-home and virtual postpartum doula services, as well as wellness products to promote self-care and healing throughout the postpartum period.
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