In the fight for the humanization of childbirth and women’s rights, new professionals have emerged to support women during pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum. This article will explore who these professionals are, what they do, and their role in the maternal journey.

comunidade de doulas

Birth Doulas

Birth Doulas are trained professionals who provide physical, emotional, and informational support to women throughout pregnancy, childbirth, and the immediate postpartum period. They are not medical professionals and cannot prescribe medication, administer injections, or perform any other medical procedures. However, they can use non-pharmaceutical techniques to help women manage pain during childbirth, as well as with breastfeeding and other pregnancy discomforts.


Birth Doulas focus on the woman’s experience of childbirth, helping her to prepare for the birth, understand her choices, and cope with the physical and emotional challenges of labor. They can also provide support to the woman’s partner and family.

Post-partum Doulas

Postpartum doulas are trained professionals who provide physical, emotional, and informational support to women after the birth of their child so that the new-mother can have a smoother transition into motherhood and the new routine. They can be helpful not only for first-time mothers, but also for second or third time mothers who are facing challenges to take care of the newborn and handling older siblings.


Here are some specific examples of how postpartum doulas can help:


  • A woman may be feeling overwhelmed with the task of caring for a newborn. A postpartum doula can offer to prepare some meals or care for the baby so the woman can rest.

  • A woman may be feeling anxious about breastfeeding. A postpartum doula can offer support and guidance on breastfeeding.

  • A woman may be feeling isolated from the outside world. A postpartum doula can organize a meet-up with other mothers so the woman can make new friends.


Midwives are healthcare professionals who specialize in the care of women during pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period. They can provide prenatal care, deliver babies, and provide postpartum care. In the United States, midwives are regulated by the state in which they practice.


Midwives are trained to provide both medical and non-medical care. They can perform many of the same tasks as doctors, including prenatal care, labor and delivery, and postpartum care. However, midwives are not licensed to perform surgery or prescribe medication.

Childbirth Educators

Childbirth educators are professionals who teach childbirth and parenting classes. They provide information about pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting, and they help women and their partners prepare for the birth of their child.


Childbirth educators are not healthcare professionals. They do not provide medical care or advice. However, they can be a valuable resource for women who are looking for information about childbirth and parenting.

Lactation Consultants

Lactation consultants are professionals who specialize in breastfeeding support. They can help women who are having difficulty breastfeeding, as well as women who want to relactate after stopping breastfeeding.

Lactation consultants are trained to provide both physical and emotional support to breastfeeding women. They can help women with a variety of breastfeeding problems, including:


  • Sore nipples
  • Low milk supply
  • Incorrect latch
  • Tandem breastfeeding (breastfeeding two or more babies at the same time)
  • Pumping and storing breast milk
Doula Aline Rossi

Aline Rossi is the founder and writer behind Villa Mater. Aline is a Brazilian mother expat in Portugal, feminist, certified birth and postpartum doula, having supported dozens of women in home and hospital births, as well as in the transition to motherhood after childbirth. Devoted admirer of Maria Montessori and Paulo Freire works on education and pedagogy.


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    Villa Mater is an information website based on scientific evidence about pregnancy, motherhood and education, with a strong commitment to the rights of women and children.