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Is A Doula Worth It?

Updated: Dec 27, 2019

If I told you that there was one thing that would make your labor shorter, reduce your chance for a c-section, and increase your satisfaction with your birth experience, would you do it?

The secret is......Hire a doula! They are your marathon trainer for birth.

What is a doula? According to DONA a doula is....

"a trained professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to a mother before, during and shortly after childbirth to help her achieve the healthiest, most satisfying experience possible."

A doula is not a medical professional (nurse, doctor, midwife) and does NOT perform any type of medical procedures.  A doula respects and honors your decisions regarding your labor and works closely with you to help you achieve your ideal birth.

What does a doula do?

  • educate you about your options and the latest evidence based research.

  • guide you in creating a birth plan

  • help your partner learn how to better support you in pregnancy, birth, and postpartum.

  • share her "doula magic" to alleviate discomfort, birth coping skills, breathing tips and more.

Numerous clinical studies have found that women who use a birth doula:

  • have shorter labors

  • less likely to need pitocin or any pain medication

  • less likely to have a cesarean

  • more likely to rate their childbirth experience positively

  • have better bonding between mom and baby

  • are more satisfied with their birth experiences

  • adjust better to motherhood

  • experience less postpartum depression

  • have greater success with breastfeeding their new babies

  • are more satisfied with their partners after birth

  (* Doula research based on 13 studies, some listed at and in the work of Klaus and Kennell in The Doula Book .)

How do I find a doula in my area?

First, ask around. See if your friends have any recommendations. Second, go to the, Nashville Doulas,  Doula Match, and Find a Doula will help you locate a doula in your area.

How do I pay for doula services?

Most clients pay with a credit card, cash, or set up a payment plan with the doula. Did you know that you can try to get reimbursed by your insurance? You can also pay using your HSA and FSA according to federal law, but some programs require you to also have a letter stating it is medically necessary. Getting the letter should be simple as all providers want you to have a better birth. You also might want to ask your doula to provide an invoice to send to your insurance.

Not convinced? Read these testimonials. Join the many women hiring doulas.

I want to become a doula. How do I do that?

There are many organizations to train and certify you (if you choose to seek the certification.) Birth Arts International (BAI). CAPPA, CBI, and DONA are the other big ones. Each offers different things and has different requirements. Cost is also variable. Some of the courses are all online. Others require that you attend a workshop.

You can also learn a lot by reading books listed on my site or by reading articles on-line. There are many organizations that will train you. Check to see if they stand for the same morals you have. Next, see what they will teach you. Lastly, see what support they will give you after the training. Will they continue to answer questions? Will they help you with the starting a business or just teach you what a doula does. How long have they been in business? Are the other doulas they have trained, happy with the training? Will they be around in 10 years? Are they a respected company? How long will the certification last?

If you want a one day doula training ($50), check out this page.

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