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Peaceful Beginning‚Äč

Birth and Baby Classes

Professional Doulas

The word "doula" comes from ancient Greek meaning "to serve women" and now, in our modern culture, it refers to a woman trained and experienced in childbirth and/or postpartum to provide physical, emotional, and informational support to a woman and her labor partner before, during, and after childbirth.

Continuous Labor Support Reduces Risk of Cesarean Section and Other Adverse Outcomes in Women and Newborns Type of Caregiver Can Make a Big Difference in Labor Experience

NEW YORK, NY (February 16, 2011) - Women who labor with a dedicated support companion are less likely than women without such support to experience a series of risky birth procedures, according to a review published in the current issue of The Cochrane Library. The comprehensive study of experiences of 15,061 women who participated in 21 randomized controlled trials confirms previously known benefits for maternal health, identifies an additional benefit for newborns, and finds no downsides. The study was carried out through the prestigious Cochrane Collaboration, an independent international organization that prepares and keeps up to date rigorous systematic reviews of evidence from the best available studies.

Overall, women who received supportive care from a companion throughout labor were less likely than women without such support to have a cesarean section, to use narcotics or any other pain medication, to use regional pain medication such as epidural analgesia, to give birth with vacuum extraction or forceps, and to rate their childbirth experience poorly. Having continuous support shortened labor and increased the likelihood of having a "spontaneous" birth with neither cesarean nor vacuum extraction nor forceps. These results confirm previous research. With the inclusion of six new randomized controlled trials, the present systematic review, identified another benefit of continuous labor support: reduced likelihood of a baby with a poor "Apgar score" rating of well being five minutes after birth.The authors conclude that all women should have continuous support while giving birth

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The Essential Ingredient: Doula

DONA International is extremely pleased to present our new documentary about birth and postpartum doulas: The Essential Ingredient: Doula