After birth, most women experience some degree of discomfort in the perineal area. Even if you did not tear, you may have some bruising or feel sore in general. Herbs and essential oils are an ideal way to ease discomfort and promote healing after birth because they can be used as often as needed.
Popular Postpartum Herbs and Essential Oils:
- Witch hazel
- Tea tree oil
- Lavender oil
- Aloe Vera
Uses for Postpartum Herbs
Herbs and oils can be mixed together to form recipes and infusions that may be added to baths, sitz baths, peri bottles, or soaked into postpartum pads.
When adding the infusion to your postpartum pads, the entire pad may be soaked or the liquid may be be pored only down the center of the pad. Store these pads in the freezer, and you have cold herbal pads that are a treat for any postpartum mom.
Unless your doctor or midwife has given you other instructions, you can take a bath as soon after the birth as you like. If you’re at home, you can take an herbal bath immediately after the birth, right before you snuggle into bed with your precious new baby.
Doulas and Midwives often have special infusions or recipes that they like to prepare for newly postpartum moms. Your Doula can be given the task of preparing your postpartum bath or herbal infusion. Speak with her before the birth about what you would like her to do and prepare for you immediately following the birth of your baby.
An infusion may also be prepared ahead of time; You, a family member, or your Postpartum Doula can then easily draw up a bath or add the infusionto your pads, sitz, or peri bottles. While herbs should be steeped in boiling water, a few drops of essential oils may be added directly the water.
Postpartum Healing Infusion
½ cup comfrey leaves
¼ cup shepherd’s purse
¼ cup uvi ursi leaves
¼ cup lavender flowers
½ cup sea salt
1/8 cup myrrh
½ gallon boiling water
Herbs and salts may be mixed together and stored in a jar. When you are ready to prepare, cover the mixture with boiling water and let steep for 30 minutes. A cheesecloth or cotton drawstring bag may be used to contain the herbs. If prepared ahead of time, strain and refrigerate the liquid. Pour two or more cups as desired into a bath, sitz bath, or peri bottle, to promote postpartum healing and relieve perineal discomfort.
** Please be careful when using strong essential oils after birth by making sure they are diluted properly. Direct contact of essential oils with the skin or an open wound can cause a burning sensation and irritation.
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