Who Says Three's a Crowd?
If you traveled to an exotic country and didn’t speak the language, you probably would consider hiring a tour guide to ensure your vacation was safe and fun. More and more, women are recognizing the same need in labor. Research shows that women who have continuous labor support from a friend, family member, and especially, the help of a professional labor assistant known as a “doula,” have easier and slightly shorter labors.
Many women count on having a nurse by their side to provide this support. Sometimes that happens, but most labor nurses are caring for several women at the same time and don’t have the time to provide contraction-by-contraction support. Dads often are expected to fill this role, but they are new to the process, too, and often need cues on how to best be supportive to their laboring partners.So, think through interviewing a doula or consider whether you know someone who is especially knowledgeable about childbirth. Having someone you trust by your side can help you manage your labor, support good decision-making and help make sure you’re able to communicate your wishes to your health care provider.
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