I’m thankful to have Amee from Inspired-Houswife guest posting today about natural postpartum recovery. I feel like my recovery was much quicker with this birth because I followed many of these tips!
Hello, Live Renewed readers. My name is Amee from Inspired-Housewife, and it is my pleasure to be with you today. Congratulations to Emily on the birth of her baby girl Blair, and way to go mama on having the baby at home too!
Now that baby Blair is here, Emily should focus on her new baby’s care, and my post today will give Emily and other new mamas some tips on how to make the most out of their postpartum care. My advice is geared towards the healing and nurturing aspect of postpartum care.
Postpartum care is a topic not given much attention when it involves healing. I gave birth to three babies and it was not until my last baby did anyone talk to me about postpartum care with regard to my body’s health and well-being. In America, we live in a country where a baby pops out at noon, and we are almost expected to be grocery shopping or lawn mowing by six in the evening.
While birth is a beautiful and wonderful event, the process goes well beyond the first cries of the baby. The first two weeks in postpartum care are critical, and the only things a mama like Emily should worry about is making milk and letting her body heal. Here are a few tips to help during this important period.
1. Fill Your Freezer
Before the baby comes it is important to make meals that freeze easily. My husband and I cooked up a storm and filled our standup freezer to capacity. This will not only save you money from buying take out food from restaurants, but the meals will be healthier and mealtimes will be less stressful.
2. Ask for Help
Schedule as much help as you can get during the first couple of weeks. Let mothers, sisters, aunts, friends, your church members or others help you. After I had my third baby, I scheduled all of my mother-in-laws to come and combined it with my husband’s paternity leave. I was lucky enough to have help for nearly two months. They cooked, cleaned, took my kids to various appointments, and made sure I only needed to worry about myself and caring for my new baby.
3. Take it Easy
Our body’s ability to birth is amazing, but as women we must take special precautions during the first couple of weeks to ensure we do not overtax our bodies and cause long term damage. My midwife made it clear I was not to pick up anything heavier than my baby or use any stairs. The muscles in the pelvic region are loose, because for months the uterus with the baby moved and stretched them out of place. The motion of stair climbing and the specific muscles used during that activity can cause a woman to later in life to have issues with prolapsed vaginal and uterine tissues as well as bladder displacement. It is better to lay low than to require a bladder lift down the road because you did not take care of your body for a few short weeks.
4. Use Herbs
Herbal sitz baths with a variety herbs are highly recommended because the herbs are soothing and healing. I loved my sitz baths and soaked two times a day. Here is a list of herbs to use during the healing process:
- Lavender (healing, soothing)
- Garlic (healing, anti microbial)
- Sea Salt (healing, astringent)
- Comfrey Leaf (tissue healing)
- Calendula Flowers (soothing, tissue healing)
- Uva Ursi (astringent)
5. Belly Band
Have a belly band on hand, and use it to hold up your stomach muscles that are loose and need support.
6. Raw Honey
Raw honey is a must have on my postpartum care list. The raw honey has antimicrobial properties, and is perfect to put on your pads while you are still bleeding. I know it sounds sticky and gross, but the relief it provides feels amazing, especially after pushing out a baby.
7. Olive Oil
Olive oil is great to use to massage your baby. The olive oil also works great to use on the baby’s bum, especially when the baby has those first sticky meconium poops.
8. Placenta Encapsulation
Finally, I had severe postpartum depression with my first child and moderate depression with my second. My midwife suggested I encapsulate my placenta. Initially, the thought of ingesting my own placenta grossed me out, but if you think about it we are likely the only mammals that do not ingest their placentas after we give birth.
The placenta is fortified with hormones to help reduce bleeding after birth, improve milk supply, and cope better with the hormonal changes. You could eat pieces of your placenta raw in lasagna, pizza and even ground up in a smoothie. I personally could not stomach the thought of eating my placenta raw, so I paid my midwife a nominal fee to encapsulate mine. My placenta was small, as was my baby, but I took one to two pills a day for several weeks until I ran out. These “happy pills”, as I called them, helped me, because I had no baby blues with my third baby whatsoever.
While it is wonderful to have a perfect nursery with all of the equipment, clothing, and toys a baby could need, the most important factor is to car for is the heath of you and your baby. The first two weeks are your “babymoon”, and you should take full advantage of it.
Do you have a favorite natural postpartum remedy to share?
Amee is a housewife, a mother to three beautiful children, two fat cats, a few fish, and is married to her “Superman.” She loves to blog about what inspires her – cooking, kids, crafting, special needs, and tips that help her in daily life. If you loved this post and want to know more, then come check out her blog Inspired-Housewife where you get a glimpse into her chaotic life as a funny, semi-crunchy mommy and wife currently into home birth, cloth diapers, gluten free food while on a simultaneous journey to not lose herself as a woman.