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The Difference Between A Midwife And A Doula

The Difference Between A Midwife And A Doula

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When it comes to choosing a midwife or doula for your baby's birth, it can get a little confusing. Are a midwife and doula the same thing? Can a doula deliver your baby? Will a midwife administer drugs for pain management?

A midwife can deliver your baby, but she also provides you with emotional support during the delivery. She will help keep you calm and comfortable while you're in labor. However, her role is more clinical than emotional, so she will continuously take your vital signs and make sure that you are dilating normally for delivery. If at any time she feels that you need additional care, she will call a backup doctor and you will go to the hospital to deliver.

If all goes normally, she will delivery your baby and monitor his or her health immediately following birth. Sometimes, women find that a midwife may be very focused on catching the baby as it is born, and may not be able to devote as much emotional care to the mother. Every delivery is different, and some women feel that a midwife was able to give them more attention than they would have received from a physician.

A midwife can't give you pain management drugs, although he or she may have herbal remedies that might be effective against pain. A nursing midwife has a degree in nursing and training in midwifery, while a traditional midwife has received her training in midwifery, but does not have a degree in nursing.

A doula, on the other hand, is focused solely on your emotional and physical comfort during the delivery. A doula can't deliver your baby, so he or she is used in a hospital, birthing center or home birth with a physician or midwife. The doula does not assess the woman's health, or decide when she should go to the hospital or call the midwife. A doula will guide you through breathing techniques to help you relax, as well as make you comfortable with back rubs or hot or cold compresses.

A postnatal doula will come to your home after the birth of your baby, and help you learn bathing, feeding and sleeping skills while caring for your baby. A doula is also trained to recognize the signs of post partum depression, and can assist you with finding support if this is the case.



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