Birthing Elements
Doula Services  for Charlotte & Surrounding Areas
Melissa Fehr - 704.756.8147

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What is a Doula?

The word "doula" comes from the ancient Greek meaning "a woman who serves" and is now used to refer to a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after birth; or who provides emotional and practical support during the postpartum period.  Studies has shown that when doulas attend birth, labors are shorter with fewer complications, babies are healthier and they breastfeed more easily.

Here are a few points about a Doula's support:

  • Understands the physiology of birth and the emotional needs of a woman in labor
  • Assists the woman in preparing for and carrying out her preferences for birth
  • Facilitates communication between the laboring woman, her partner and her clinical team
  • Provides emotional support, physical comfort measures and an objective viewpoint, as well as helping the woman get the information she needs to make informed decisions
  • Stays by the side of the laboring woman throughout the entire labor and birth
  • Recognized birth as a key experience the mother will remember all her life
  • Perceives her role as nurturing and protecting the woman's memory of the birth experience
  • Allows the woman's partner to participate at their comfort level

Clinical studies have found that a doula's presence at birth tends to result in:

  • Shorter labors with fewer complications
  • Reduces negative feelings about one's birth experience
  • Reduces anxiety in labor
  • Reduces the need to pitocin, forceps or vacuum extraction and caesareans
  • Reduces the mother's request for pain medication and/or epidurals. 
  • Parents feel more secure and cared for and are more successful in adapting to new family dynamics
  • Have greater success with breastfeeding, have more self-confidence, less postpartum depression and lower incidences of abuse.

These are just a few of the benefits of having a Birth Doula.  The acceptance of doulas in maternity care is growing rapidly with the recognition of their important contribution to the improved physical outcomes and emotional well being of mother and infant.

If you are a first time mom-to-be you’re probably assuming that your nurse will shepherd you and your partner through labor.  Studies show that average labor nurse spends 15-30 min of her 8 hour shift offering physical comfort measures, providing emotional support or advocating for her patients.  If you want an expert to help you and your partner meet one of life’s greatest and most rewarding challenges, you will have to bring assistance with you – a Doula.

Many studies have been done in different countries with different populations of woman under different circumstances and consistently found benefits further strengthen confidence in the validity of their results.


Melissa Fehr
704-756-8147
Melissa@BirthingElements.com or
Fehrydust@gmail.com