Welcome to Your 4th Trimester: Herbal Remedies For Postpartum Healing
Healing Your Body After Pregnancy
Congrats mama! You just finished building another human being inside your body,..from scratch. You carried them and as they grew your body shifted, morphed, and stretched. Whew…You did it! But now the hard work really begins. You have to learn how to take care of this magic bean, adjust to a completely new life all while healing your body. The fourth trimester is no joke! But there are ways to make it easier.
Post Birth Vaginal and Perineum Care
Your nether regions have just been through their toughest trial…and there are some wounds that need tending to. For immediate relief and to promote healing we turn to our herbal allies to help heal trauma in the pelvic region. We consider herbs that are going to help with healing from tears like lavender, comfrey and aloe. To soothe soreness, redness and inflammation, rose and calendula are our go-to’s. For hemorrhoids, astringents like yarrow and witch hazel offer overall relief from discomfort and a chance to recover and relax.
These herbs can be used in the form of a Sitz Bath or made into an infusion or added to a peri-bottle or onto a pad. Refer to our blog on Sitz Baths 101 to find out how it's done. Herbal salves and creams applied topically can also offer relief from inflammation and if you had a c-section, used directly to heal the scar itself.
Regulating Your Mood and Hormones
After birth, your hormones are in the most flux since puberty. Your uterus is rapidly shrinking, your emotions are all over the map and temperature regulation is impossible. Help regulate these raging hormones with calming, nutritional teas and wholesome foods. Breastfeeding, if you are able, is also an amazing natural aid in moderating hormonal swings. A calming bath with Epsom Salts (yes it's safe to bathe after birth) can also go miles.
Herbs like nettle and red raspberry leaf are packed full of vitamins, minerals, iron and calcium which help to restore mama and enrich breast milk. And as a healthy digestive system helps with nutrient absorption, curbing bloating and overall recovery, it is important to look at digestive aides. A tea of chamomile, fennel, anise and peppermint will do the trick, and as a bonus, both Fennel and Anise will also help with colic in babies and milk flow for mama.
Breast Engorgement and BreastFeeding
The first day or two before your milk comes in you spend wondering “Did my milk come in?”… and then it does…and OH BOY! There is no mistaking that your breasts can be rock hard and incredibly sensitive. To help with engorgement, a hot water soak in epsom salts helps along with herbal poultices of comfrey leaves, calendula flower and marshmallow root. For nipple pain, a salve with healing and anti-inflammatory properties containing herbs like plantain, calendula and marshmallow root will work wonders on sore and cracked nipples. Don’t give up…you’ve got this!
And last but not least…sleep! You need it, and it will seem elusive these first few months. Whether it be because your little love bug is awake and asleep then awake..repeat 3x more;) You are exhausted but you need to sleep! Sleep when the baby sleeps is sage advice, if you can swing it…and try to calm anxious nerves with herbs to lull yourself and your little one to dream land, or a hot bath…but get some sleep!
Nervines are herbs that work on the nervous system and are ever so important for both mother and child. These will help calm anxiety and tension, relieve irritability and lower the effects of stress on the body. Some favorites are chamomile, oat straw and skullcap. These will help calm and take the edge off and help with sleep.