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Support During A Cesarean Section Birth

We often get asked questions about the benefit of doula support for cesarean births.

  • What will my doula do to support me in the event that I have a cesarean delivery?

  • Do I even need a doula if I am having a c-section?

  • How can my doula support me if I’m having a surgery?

  • Do doulas support natural births only?

Doulas are a great support whether you are having a planned {medically recommended or elective} or unplanned cesarean!

Here are a few of the ways that your Doula can support you during your cesarean birth:

  • Your doula will provide emotional support leading up to, during, and after a cesarean delivery. Whether your cesarean was planned or unplanned, it is still a surgery and emotional support is imperative.

  • Wilmington Coastal Doulas will help prepare you for surgery by helping you understand exactly what to expect, from the beginning to the end.

  • If the surgery was unplanned or emergent, she will help you and your partner stay calm, help you weigh the benefits vs risks, and help you think more clearly so that you can make an informed decision.

  • Sometimes breastfeeding after a cesarean is challenging. We help with that!

  • We are a listening ear, helping you process and navigate any feelings of trauma or disappointment if you have them.

  • All of the labor doulas affiliated with Wilmington Coastal Doulas have great respect for the OR staff and understand the necessity of medical intervention for a healthy outcome. Your doula is there each step allowing space and providing support for a healthy mind.

In the event of a planned (elective or medically recommended ) cesarean delivery, your doula experience could look something like this:

Your doula meets you at the hospital when you feel you are ready for face to face support, and helps you get ready for your surgery. Your doula helps creates a calm and peaceful environment for you and your partner leading up to delivery. Your doula talks through any fears or concerns you might have about your cesarean and helps you navigate any and all feelings that you might be experiencing.

She will help your partner get all suited up in his “outfit” for surgery. She waits with any family that might be in the waiting room and provides them with a sense of peace and comfort by answering any questions they have, as well as reassuring what's normal to expect as part of the process.

In the event your doula is permitted in the OR with you, she is a constant presence by your side, helping create a calm and honoring space for you to meet your baby for the first time face to face.

Your doula is notified when your delivery is complete and meets you in the recovery room. She helps you and baby have skin to skin time if desired and applicable. She will help with getting you comfortable and in position for breastfeeding. Navigating your first few latches while also coming out of recovery with pain medication is an area of expertise for your doula.

Your doula helps you, your partner, and baby get all settled in your postpartum recovery room on the mother/baby floor. Typically after your first night home, your doula will visit you in your home. This visit is to help you process how you’re feeling and healing, how baby is doing, answer questions about breast or bottle feeding, baby soothing.

Her skill is attunement and service, her expertise is birth, postpartum recovery and newborn care. She is a resource for you when you need and even at times when you may be unsure what your needs are. Her gentle, nonjudgmental support is available to you however the weeks and months unfold for you and your family for this new and exciting chapter of your lives!

In the event of an unplanned Cesarean delivery, your doula experience could look something like this:

When it becomes apparent that the need for a cesarean delivery is an option, your doula can help you and your partner stay calm, will help you understand what is going on in the situation, and can help you formulate questions for your OB, Midwife or the OR staff. This is a time that practices that were mentioned prenatally in preparation for an unmedicated or medicated vaginal birth are still useful and your doula is there to help you use them. Breathing techniques, physical support while prepping for the OR will all bring a level of comfort that only having solid continuous support could.

Your doula can help create a calm and peaceful environment in your room to help reduce some of the stress and anxiety that may be building. The after delivery support that your doula will provide will be full of support just like it would if you were having a planned cesarean.

Your doula will provide a listening ear to you and help you navigate through any feelings of disappointment or trauma about the delivery if you are experiencing them. Or she will also be there to celebrate the little life you just brought into the world!

Again, her gentle, nonjudgmental support is available to you however the weeks and months unfold for you. Postpartum recovery is not linear, as with any healing, so to have an expert support person by your side from pregnancy through postpartum is beneficial to any family to be. Doulas do support cesarean births because doulas support birth.

Breathtaking photos taken by Leanne Haskins Photography <3

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