The Doula Guide To Birth Book Review by Indigo Wild

The ‘Doula Guide To Birth’ written by Ananda Lowe & Rachel Zimmerman is a must read for soon to be parents.

This book is written by two health experts, Ananda Lowe is a senior level doula and Rachel Zimmerman an award winning health reporter and this definitely comes through when reading this book.

On the front cover it says, “Secrets Every Woman Should Know” and this is true. They dive deep into the part the medical side plays in your baby birth and what you need to know and how to approach certain situation.

Throughout the book you read inspirational stories from a number of mothers, partners and health professionals that talk about their own experiences.

If you are considering hiring a doula, if you’re not sure if you should or what they even do, this book will clear up all your questions and uncertainties. The best thing about this book is that all the information that is provided is backed up by facts, statistics and figures, evidence based studies from Cochrane Collaboration, ACOG, Child Birth Connection Reports, American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology to name a few.

So you know that this book isn’t just written from opinion.

It talks about the history, where and when things started for example Birth plans. Penny Simkins was the first person to publish a brochure with guidelines, which became the first ever Birth Plan in 1980.

This book tells you benefits of having a doula and how this compares to doctors, midwives and nurses. The roles that all of these people play in the birth of your baby. Having everyone work as a team together to support the Mother. If it’s your partner or the father of your baby who is having doubts, it goes through common fears and testimonials from partners and father’s express their experience and benefits of a doula from their point of view.

It highlights that doulas are there to support you and how you want to birth, and if you change your mind during labour they’ll still support you whether it be receiving pain medication or any other changes.

One of the things I found different about this book compared to other baby books is that it discusses the role of lesbian partners, sperm donors, mother’s adopting the child out, grandparents becoming grandparents, discussing the things that they struggle with. However it is just a small section of the book but very interesting to hear from their point of view.

Throughout the book they have an “Ask Your Doctor Now” section. This provides information and questions you can bring up and ask your doctor before your labour. Advice on how to approach caregivers with controversial topics. By asking them for evidence based information or by doing your own research using Cochrane Collaboration. I think this is so important and powerful, and really helps you take the control back of your labour. I believe that most of, if not, all of your questions will be answered in the book.

Some of the information included in this book will only apply to Americans. For example where to find a  Doula and your insurance company paying for a Doula, which doesn’t happen in Australia, but you can do your own research in finding the perfect Doula for you.

Other important topics that are discussed are, the three stages of labour, going to the hospital too early, vaginal examinations, time limits the a hospital setting,, how to prepare for interventions, dilation and where this originated from, breast stimulation, birth plan, pain relief drugs and hormones, postpartum among many more. The appendix includes a questionnaire to debrief your labour called ‘Evaluation Of Your Birth’. Lastly the Evernotes are extensive on each chapter and where the information came from.

As a Doula and as a Mother I highly recommend this book. It was easy to read but gave so much important information. I enjoyed reading it and would recommend this book to soon to be Mothers, second or third baby Mothers, Fathers, other support people and Doulas.

This is a book I will keep in my library to lend to all my doula clients.

My name is Indigo Wild, and I am a qualified birth and postpartum doula who has trained at the Doula Training Academy. I am also a Birth Photographer and I’m regularly upskilling by attending workshops with all things to empower women. I am based in the southern suburbs of Perth. If you would like more information about my services please contact me:

Business Name: Indigo Wild – Warriors With Wombs
Business Email: [email protected]
0431 107 260

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