Why choose herbs over traditional medicine to soothe your postpartum aches and pains? “A lot of women, especially when breastfeeding, aren’t comfortable with introducing different drugs into their bodies,” says Demetria Clark, global director of Birth Arts International and founder and director of Heart of Herbs Herbal School. “Herbs can offer similar benefits without the risks and safety issues.” Plus, she says, they’re cheaper and readily available. With your health care provider’s approval, try these natural forms of postpartum care …
You can find postpartum-friendly herbal teas at your local grocery store, includ-ing varieties that nourish the nervous system, calm new mom nerves and increase milk production in breast-feeders. If the taste doesn’t suit you, try mixing your tea into juice, a smoothie or a bowl of oatmeal to glean the same benefits.
For sitz and giggles
If you had a vaginal tear or episiotomy or are just feel-ing a little on the sore side after delivery, consider investing in a sitz bath. The shallow bathtub fits over your toilet seat and is a great way to ease the ache. Add rose petals, a pinch of sea salt and calendula to warm water to help heal tears naturally.
For an on-the-go remedy, mix together witch hazel and other essential oils, such as lavender, then spray them on a maxi pad and store in the freezer until ready for use. If you had a C-section, you can make a similar compress with calendula or St. John’s wort to assist in healing scar tissue.