01 May Postpartum Prep: The essentials for postpartum recovery
Your lady bits will thank you
You have spent countless hours preparing for your baby’s arrival. You have swaddle blankets, clothes, crib, car seat, and stroller… but have you thought about what you will need for your postpartum recovery? If you are an expecting parent that is planning to give birth to your baby, you are going to want to think about this before your baby arrives. The first few days with your new baby is an adjustment: Throw in some vaginal bleeding, perineum soreness, and hemorrhoids and the last thing you need is to be frantically sourcing all those postpartum essentials.
Regardless of whether you are one of those ‘tell me everything’ people or prefer to adopt an ‘ignorance is bliss’ approach, there are some postpartum basics you will want to know about and be prepared for. Full disclosure: it isn’t sexy or glamorous. Not to worry, we will spare you the gruesome details.
It’s almost like you’re wearing a diaper too
You will experience vaginal bleeding (lochia) after you have your baby. For the first few days, this will be a lot like having a heavy period. However, tampons are a postpartum no-no: They put you at risk for infection. So, flashback to those early days of having your period and you are about to reacquainted with the maxi pad – or, in this case, the maternity pad. For those first few days, you will need these as they are large and very absorbent! As the discharge eases up, you will be able to transition to a pad that is a little less diaper-like.
Bringing sexy back (I don’t think so)
While disposable undies are not attractive by any stretch of the imagination, these are very nice for those first few days of postpartum. They are very comfortable and save you from ruining a perfectly good pair of undies with blood stains. Similarly, using an underpad at night can save you from ruining your sheets or needing to do laundry unnecessarily.
Boo-hoo for your hoohoo
You can expect that your lady bits are going to be very sore! Especially if there was tearing or you required stitches. In addition to managing the pain, it is also very important to prevent infection and help the area heal. As it is unlikely you will have the luxury of being able to regularly take a bath (if at all), using a sitz bath a few times a day is recommended. Add Epsom Salts and Healing Herbs to help clean the area, reduce swelling, and soothe any discomfort you are experiencing. The Earth Mama Organic Perineal Balm, which contains Witch Hazel and other healing ingredients, is also great to soothe and cool the area to provide relief.
Tee-pee is a no-go
For the first week or so, it is recommended that you avoid using toilet paper after you use the washroom. Instead, use a peri (“squirt”) bottle to clean yourself. (If you have stairs, you may want to be sure that you have one of these in each bathroom.) Rinsing with a peri bottle will also help to alleviate stinging after you use the washroom. Earth Mama Angel Baby New Mama Bottom Spray can also offer relief after using the washroom and helps to ease the discomfort of vaginal soreness, swelling, and episiotomies.
Ice-Ice baby (anyone else singing the MC Hammer in their head?)
It is quite likely that your perineum will be swollen. Ice packs help to reduce the swelling, as well as offer another source of pain relief to the area. You can also add some healing herbs to your maternity pads and freeze them to make your ‘padsicles’. Soaking in your sitz bath will also help with any swelling you experience.
Oh heck, hemorrhoids too?
Well, if you were lucky enough to escape hemorrhoids during your pregnancy, you may have the pleasure of their company after giving birth. The upside is that all the essentials for postpartum recovery will help with hemorrhoids too. Soaking in a sitz bath, using your healing herbs, and applying the Earth Mama Bottom Balm are all effective ways to help your hemorrhoids heal.
Preparing for baby’s arrival can feel like there is an endless list of things to do. But not to worry, we have one solution that can help knock a few things of your list. Our complete and practical postpartum package has everything you need to ensure that you are prepared for your postpartum recovery. Even better, it ships right to your door! (This makes a very thoughtful and practical gift too for that friend that has no idea what is about to happen to their lady bits.)
Just remember, your body has been through a lot and it needs time to heal. The physical recovery from childbirth can take a few months, so do your best to take it slow, get some rest (when you can), and remember that this is only temporary. Above all else, trust your instincts: If something doesn’t feel quite right, make sure you take the time to seek out proper medical advice.