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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.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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