5 Ways Doulas Can Make Nurses' Lives Easier

In honor of Nurse Appreciation Week, Pensacola Birth Services would like to thank each and every nurse who works tirelessly to ensure a safe delivery for both mom and baby! We see first hand how hard you work, and we would like to take this time to highlight how PBS doulas can help you! 

  1. Clean Up

    1. Our priority is the comfort of our clients and part of that is keeping things tidy. We jump at the chance to change bed linens, get fresh towels, collect emesis basins and keep the room clean and organized. This alleviates the need for the nurse to have to worry about these tasks so they can focus on more important things.

  2. Bathroom Visits

    1. Another priority for PBS doulas is to help encourage the progression of labor. A full bladder can hinder cervical dilation and increase discomfort; therefore, we help to ensure that our clients are relieving their bladders often. At PBS, we understand that nurses are required to document everything that their patient does, this is why we keep a detailed log of such activities and communicate frequently with the nurse so he or she can document accurately.

  3. Hydration

    1. Giving birth is a physically taxing event, and we understand the need for our clients to stay hydrated. In the absence of IV fluids and with a doctors’ order, we love being able to offer our clients ice-cold water and fresh ice chips. There’s no need for our clients to push the call light for a constant refill, just point us in the right direction, and we would love to help! As always, we will log just how much our clients are drinking and let the nurse know!

  4. Changing the client’s position

    1. This is one area that the doula and the nurse can really work as a team to help the client. The use of various positions is one of the most important tools in the doula’s toolbox. It not only can increase relaxation and comfort but also it can help aid in consistent dilation and labor progression. Whether it’s a birth ball at Baptist, or the squat bar at Sacred Heart, we are trained in how to help our clients safely utilize these various options. If there are specific positions that are undesirable or a particular increment of rotation is best just let us know, we are always happy to comply!

  5. Client Relationship

    1. At PBS, we place the highest priority on establishing a strong relationship with our clients. We have spent hours discussing their concerns, desires, and feelings about the birth of their child. This unique relationship can help us to share insight with the nurse in order to better communicate with the client and her partner. From the very first conversation that we have with a potential client, we stress the importance of good and thorough communication with everyone on the birth team.


5 Things Doulas Can’t Do

  1. Place a fetal or contraction monitor. We can apply pressure to it with your permission and presence in the room if you are needing assistance. (Ex. When the client is on a birth ball, leaning forward)

  2. Adjust an IV. Other than pushing the “silence” button with your permission and subsequently pushing the call-button to notify you, doulas do not touch IV’s or their machines.

  3. Tell nurses, care providers, or their clients what to do. Our clients may ask our opinion, but we refrain from giving it. This is their birth, and we provide non-judgemental and un-biased support.

  4. Talk to nurses or doctors on behalf of our clients about their medical decisions.

  5. Any medical procedures including taking their blood pressure, temperature, checking their cervix or anything else that is medically indicated and charted.

Thank you again to all nurses and a special thank you to the nurses at Baptist Hospital, Sacred Heart of Pensacola, Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast, Naval Hospital Pensacola, Santa Rosa Medical Center, and West Florida Hospital! We have had the privilege to meet and work with wonderful men and women who are passionate about helping our clients to achieve a positive birth experience.