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Postpartum Self Care

Postpartum Self Care

Here are 4 things a new mom can do to ensure a good recovering from childbirth

1.    Postpartum Doula:  One of the best investments for a postpartum woman, who lack family support, is to hire help.  A doula would be able to help you with newborn care and breast feeding, most doulas will even help with cooking, grocery shopping, and cleaning.  This leaves you with more time to rest and bond with your baby

2.    Maintain warmth at all time.  Many traditional cultures use heat as part of the treatment for new moms.  In Thailand, the mother would sleep next to a fire; in Vietnam, a small fire would be lit under a special bed for the mother to rest; the Hopi Indians in Arizona places the mother wrapped in sheepskin on a bed of hot sand.  Here in Canada, you can improvise by keeping a hot water bottle on your lower belly (unless you are recovering from C-section, in which case, keep the water bottle closer to chest area), wear socks or slippers, avoid sleeveless nursing clothes, and avoid ice packs (even for that achy perineum).  Heat reduces after pain and will improves lactation.

3.    Use a slow cooker to make nourishing stews from a variety of root vegetables, leafy vegetable, grains, and meat.  Use pressure cooker to make thick meat and vegetable broths.  Only eat and drink warm/hot items.  No raw foods.  It takes too much energy to process raw foods.  Cook with ginger, cinnamon, onion, wine, and other warming substances.

4.    Moxa and acupuncture.  Traditional Chinese medicine has elaborate protocols on how to recover from childbirth.  Moxa and acupuncture can help increase milk supply (even if you have already tried everything else), reduce anxiety, improve energy, and other postpartum needs.

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