Friday, August 17, 2012

Guest Post with "Moore from Katie"!

 Good Morning! Today I have a guest post from Katie at "Moore from Katie." Katie emailed me last week and asked if she could contribute to this awesome blog you all love to read and I said "heck yes!" She has a fresh perspective on motherhood and pregnancy and I think it's great stuff. Thank you Katie!

Postpartum Doulas: Nurturing the Mother
  Originally, the word doula referred to a woman who served the mistress of a Greek household. This head servant assisted the mistress through her pregnancy, during childbirth and through the postpartum period. The responsibilities of a doula, while evolving, have stayed very true to this original meaning. Today, a doula refers to a trained and experienced person who assists future and new moms through the entire pregnancy, birth and postpartum process by providing emotional, physical, informational and practical support. There are two types of doulas: birth doulas and postpartum doulas, each with its own set of responsibilities and functions.

Birth Doula 
A birth doula assists the pregnant woman through the pregnancy and childbirth process and in the immediate moments after birth. She provides support and information to help the future mother make decisions and helps to make the entire birth experience as close to ideal for the mother as possible. A pregnant woman will generally have hundreds of questions about what to expect in the delivery room so a doula can help answer those questions and provide advice on things like pain management choices and optional procedures like circumcision and umbilical cord blood banking.

Postpartum Doula
A postpartum doula’s responsibilities begin when the baby is born and continue throughout the initial weeks of the baby’s life. She is there to provide emotional, physical, informational and practical support for all the members of the family to ease the transition of the new baby in the home. During this time, the doula is also a companion to the mother and can help her with the challenges posed by receiving the newborn. According to Doulas of North America, a postpartum doula “offers evidence-based information on infant feeding, emotional and physical recovery from birth, infant soothing and coping skills for new parents and makes appropriate referrals when necessary.”

Doulas do not simply tell the mother how they should be doing things. They actually support the mother and educate them as she settles into her new role and make the entire transition easier through hands-on lessons. A doula also looks out for signs and symptoms of postpartum depression in a mother and works to help alleviate any of those feelings.

 A postpartum doula can work with a mother for just a few short visits or up to as long as they are needed. Some postpartum doulas can be full-time companions to the mom during this period, while others can spend shorter shifts of just a few hours per day or a few times a week with the mom. During this time the doula focuses on the needs of the new mom just as much as on the needs of the newborn, since nurturing the mother is one of the postpartum doula’s goals. A nurtured mother who knows she is supported is less anxious when taking care of her child, since she knows she is surrounded by loving people who are ready to assist her and help her embrace her new role.

In their role of supporting the mother during this very special and delicate time, postpartum doulas will also often include other services such as cooking, running errands, babysitting and even doing some light housework to allow the mother to spend her time recovering and bonding with her newborn, instead of fretting about how to balance her other responsibilities with the needs of the baby.

“Katie Moore has written and submitted this article. Katie is an active blogger who discusses the topics of motherhood, children, fitness, health and all other things Mommy. She enjoys writing, blogging, and meeting new people! To connect with Katie contact her via her blog, Moore From Katie or her twitter, @moorekm26.”

Thanks for stopping by! (don't you wish you had a doula to hang out with every day, regardless of if you're having a baby or not?!? I do!)  Go give Katie some love!


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