doula is an assistant who provides various forms of non-medical support (physical, emotional and informed choice) in the childbirth process. Based on a particular doula's training and background, the doula may offer support during prenatal care, during childbirth and/or during the postpartum period. A birth doula is a care provider for labor. Thus a labor doula may attend a home birth or might attend the parturient woman during labor at home and continue while in transport and then complete supporting the birth at a hospital or a birth center. A postpartum doula typically begins providing care in the home after the birth. Such care might include cooking for the mother, breastfeeding support, newborn care assistance, errands, light housekeeping etc. Such care is provided from the day after the birth, providing services through the first six weeks postpartum.
at 12:35 AM on Jan. 22, 2009