The Doula Guide to Birth

Secrets Every Pregnant Woman Should Know

By Ananda Lowe; Rachel Zimmerman
(Bantam, Paperback, 9780553385267, 304pp.)

Publication Date: May 19, 2009

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Description

Here is your guide to the fastest-growing trend in childbirth—a tradition as old as motherhood itself. Doulas, or professional labor assistants, have led thousands of expectant women through the birthing process in a way that’s safe and meaningful, and that creates the birth and postbirth experience all mothers long for.

What exactly do doulas do?

How to find one that suits you.

What are the “trade secrets” only doulas know but every woman should be aware of (even if you don’t have a doula)?

In The Doula Guide to Birth, senior-level doula Ananda Lowe and award-winning health reporter Rachel Zimmerman have written a most comprehensive book that draws on the wisdom of these skilled experts, whose experience with doctors, midwives, nurses, and hospitals makes them invaluable advocates before, during, and after birth.

* Labor techniques anyone can use
* Pain medication: do you, don’t you—and when?
* What dads and loved ones need and can do best
* When should you really go to the hospital in labor?
* How to prepare for unexpected medical procedures, including cesareans and epidural
* Postpartum—what it’s really like
* A clip-out chart of labor techniques, birth plan worksheets, and much more

Combining science, wit, warmth, and support, as well as the inspirational stories of dozens of mothers and their partners, you’ll find the “doula viewpoint” on every major pregnancy and delivery issue, making this one of the most important childbirth books you’ll ever read and recommend.




About the Author

Ananda Lowe served for seven years as Assistant Director of the Association of Labor Assistants and Childbirth Educators, which conducts the oldest doula-training program in the country. She is currently a senior-level doula in Boston as well as a maternity massage specialist.

Rachel Zimmerman is an award-winning reporter who covers health and medicine for the Wall Street Journal. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.




Praise For The Doula Guide to Birth

“Ananda Lowe and Rachel Zimmerman are the perfect duo to bring The Doula Guide to Birth into life…an encouraging, informative and dynamic book for every pregnant woman to devour….Real advice from real women who have real experience, a passion for birth and a doula's heart for helping all families have great beginnings.  Thank you for giving the world this gift.” —Barbara Harper, RN, Founder/Director, Waterbirth International, and author of Gentle Birth Choices

“I loaned this book to my pregnant best friend… She didn’t want to give it back, and only did so when I promised to return it to her.”—Marjorie Greenfield MD, author of Dr. Spock's Pregnancy Guide and Associate Professor Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Case School of Medicine and University Hospitals of Cleveland

“Every expectant mother deserves access to the information, wisdom, and support so lovingly and masterfully offered in this book. If I could give every mother-to-be a gift it would be The Doula Guide to Birth because reading it will give them some of the experience of how it feels to be lovingly supported by a doula."—Pam Leo, author of Connection Parenting

“Throughout history doulas have been an important link to help women through labor and the bleary-eyed days postpartum. Finally, a resource that clearly and convincingly explains the science and the common sense of why we need doulas today more than ever. An excellent book!” —Tina Cassidy, author of Birth: The Surprising History of How We Are Born

“Being among the first to teach doulas to support laboring women and the author of the first book on the role of the birth doula, I am glad to see The Doula Guide to Birth added to the ranks of books available to childbearing women and was even more excited to read the knowledge the authors are sharing with their readers- pregnant women.”—Paulina (Polly) Perez, RN, author of Doula Programs: How to Start and Run a Private or Hospital-based Program with Success!

"Doulas play an increasingly popular and important role on the maternity scene today…The Doula Guide To Birth is a comprehensive and thoughtful book that describes exactly what doulas do, how doulas work, how they can improve your childbirth experience, and how you can incorporate a doula into your labor and delivery plans. Highly recommended to all pregnant women who wish to be fully informed about their options."—William Camann, MD, Co-author, Easy Labor

“I will gladly recommend this book to families in my prenatal classes…It will reassure women (and men) in their own abilities and shows how they can develop a positive and supportive setting for birth.”—Robin Snyder-Drummond, Certified Childbirth Educator, member of the Steering committee for Partners in Perinatal Health

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