The postnatal period covers the time from birth to when your baby is six weeks old. It can be both a special and challenging time for new mums, and there are often both physical and emotional changes to experience. One very common post natal experience is tiredness and another is perineal pain. The postpartum period needs to be a time of rest and healing where possible.
If you are experiencing any or all of the following, then a post natal herbal bath can be of benefit to you:
• slow healing perineal pain
Specific herbs and essential oils are renowned for their ability to promote healing and rest, the best known of which is lavender. Here are some ingredients that can be used post-natally to alleviate a variety of symptoms:
Lavender: Lavender can calm body and mind, and is great to use before bed. Lavender essential oil is also healing oil, and in additional to healing and relaxing, it is useful for pain relief, headaches, muscular pain, stress and it also has antibacterial properties, and can be beneficial for healing after an episiotomy.
Calendula:Calendula is soothing for healing tissues, minor infections and can improve the healing of cuts and wounds.
Chamomile:Chamomile is soothing for healing tissues and is also a relaxing sleep aid and an anti-inflammatory.
Himalayan salts: Himalayan salts can heal and also relax muscles and contain many vital minerals. You can also use Epsom salts however be mindful that true Epsom salts are crystals extracted from a mine, but many commercially available Epsom salts are actually crystals created in a lab using synthetic acids.
Herbs: There are a variety of common herbs, that you can dry and use in your bath, some of which you may already have in the garden. Lavender and rosemary for example make great bath herbs. You can tie bunches together and hang them up to dry somewhere dark and cool. They will usually take several weeks to dry. Once dry, you can mix with a handful of salts and use in your bath.
If using bath salts containing essential oils, you can float the herbs directly into the bath, or place into a stocking which is easier to clean up. I personally love the feeling of being surrounded by colourful herbs and flowers! The salts and essential oils will circulate into your bath water.
For women recovering from caesarean sections, herbs and essential oils can be utilised effectively for emotional healing and wellbeing during the recovery phase, as well as for physical healing. In particular, lavender and calendula are beneficial. Lavender can help ease pain and inflammation and relieve itchiness and calendula speeds healing and also reduces inflammation.