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Ask a doula: Preparing for birth and postpartum

This blog is for all our mums-to-be, and anyone who is supporting a mum-to-be during pregnancy, birth or postpartum. During pregnancy, preparing for birth is very important, and all mums-to-be need to think about what support they would like to have for their birth. That’s why this week’s blog we have teamed up with the amazing Jayde from Sun and Moon Doula services in NSW.

We asked her some burning questions our mums-to-be had about birth, birth support, and pain relief options.

You can find Jayde’s website here, and follow her on Instagram here.

Firstly, thank you so much to Jayde for answering all our questions!

Can you please tell us a little about what a doula does?

Doulas are non-medical professionals trained to provide continuous physical, emotional support who also provided information on topics that the mother and partner find important.

What are the benefits of having a doula? And do you still work with women who are having a cesarean or an epidural?

There are many benefits that have been shown from having a doula these include a decrease is the risk of Caesarean section and intervention , a increase in the likelihood of spontaneous labour & decreased use of pain relief. Having a doula has also been shown for both mum and her partner to feel more satisfied with the labour. I personally still work with women who are having a caesarean or planning to have an epidural but that is something that varies from doula to doula and you would have to ask the doula you are working with if she supports those decisions.

What is the difference between a doula and a midwife?

The main difference between a doula and a midwife is doulas are not medically trained so we can not perform internals, medical checks or monitoring. Another big difference is a lot of the time the midwife works for the medical system where as a doula is working for the mum; our main focus is you and your spiritual and emotional care as these are things that you will carry with you for life.

What do you recommend pregnant mums do to prepare before birth?

There are so many differ things for pregnant mums to do to prepare for labour and birth, my main ones would be 1-have a birth map that everyone on your birthing team is familiar with. 2-practice your breathing techniques and visualisation as well 3-be prepared….this means learn different positions to help bring baby down, know your rights as a birthing mother, EDUCATE yourself. 4-get your partner involved, everything you learn teach him as well 5- meditate, if it’s not something you do start to try it because if you can ignore the outside world while in labour and listen to your body and your natural instincts birthing your baby with be so empowering.

What natural pain relief or pain management options do you recommend?

My personal favourite natural pain relief options are definitely water (I personally spent 8hrs straight of one of my births in the bath), movement/different positions it’s amazing how much moving or getting your body into different positions can ease the pain and help progress labour, visualisation is another great pain management tool along with essential oils and acupressure.

What products do you recommend for postpartum?

Personally I don’t have many “products” I would recommend for postpartum. Support is the biggest thing when it comes to postpartum, find your tribe that will come and help with daily jobs like washing, cooking, cleaning ect. A book called “The First Forty” is a great recipe book for food to help strength you after birth and help your body recover. Baby wearing wraps is a must have for me as it allows you to have your baby close but you can still do things if you feel up to it. But I strongly believe that in the postpartum period the mother needs to be mothered and that comes in the form of people and support not products.

If you need help with products for your postpartum period, check out our amazing range of items just for new mums here.

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