We said best wishes to another class...it's always hard to believe our group has been together for 12 weeks, and that the gatherings are over until reunion time.
Here is a sneak peek into a part of our last class. We share a visual of items our couples can consider keeping handy in the first few days after baby arrives:
Water : We suggest that coaches bring mom a tall glass of water or a full water bottle every time she settles down to nurse. One of the best ways for mamas to make milk is to stay hydrated. Use your environmentally friendly refillable containers for bonus points :)
Easy Snacks: Another key to keeping mama making milk is to keep her fed. Along with that glass or bottle of water, bring her a healthy snack. Carrot sticks, celery sticks, apple slices, cheese cubes, peanut butter, hummus, crackers..things that are easy to eat with your hands and dip in something to make it a little interesting!
Sleep Mask: Sleep is the third key to making milk. It's hard to know which one of these three is the most important. Suffice it to say that sleep and supply have a direct relationship, the more you sleep, the better you are able to establish a milk supply; and the less you sleep, you are less likely to have an adequate milk supply. The good news is that most women can increase their milk supply by getting more sleep.
Peri-bottle: These are used for rinsing the vaginal area in the first few weeks after a vaginal birth. The area is stretched as you ease baby out, so you will be encouraged to rinse clean, instead of wiping, the vaginal area after using the restroom .
Perineal Herbs: Why these are not used in the hospital setting, I may never know. Using this brew in the peri-bottle to rinse the vaginal area after using the restroom was amazing. It was soothing, and the healing was so much faster! You can also use the solution made by steeping the herbs for a sitz bath - read more here about what is in the herb packet. You can purchase this packet at www.everythingbirth.com, or Earth Mama, Angel Baby sells a package with six ready-to-go compresses.
Sitz Bath: You can use an inflatable tube to sit on in the bathtub, or you can use a basin that has a pouch for warm water and a delivery tube in the toilet. You can use warm salt water or your perineal herb brew for faster healing with either of these options.
Perineal Compresses - 3 different options: You can purchase a perineal compress, you can open the top end of a diaper and stuff the inside with ice (disposable filler absorbs most of the moisture so it doesn't leak), or you can fill hospital gloves or a condom with ice and tie them off. All three can provide relief to a sore bottom area.
Witch hazel & Cosmetic pads: You can make your own hemorrhoid pads by using Witch Hazel and cosmetic pads. You can make some ahead and put them in the refrigerator for a cool and relieving compress for the bottom area. Another popular idea that incorporates witch hazel is to make "padsicles" - find a tutorial HERE. I liked THESE pads by medline - soft and non-adhesive for the win.
Comfortable Nursing Bra: A common piece of advice mamas hear is to buy a nursing bra one size larger than their regular size to accomodate their nursing breast size. I would add that it's important to purchase a soft-structured bra for sleeping and for those early days of engorgement. These do not offer much support if you wear a larger cup size, so they aren't necessarily for every day use. I sure do love them for sleeping though - much more comfortable than the supported ones I use during the day.
Nursing Pads: You can use the washable kind, or the disposable kind - what ever works best for you and your lifestyle. The key is to make sure the nipple area stays dry so that you minimize any possibility of moisture that can then lead to an infection.
Cabbage Leaves: To help with engorgement - these can be very effective milk supply minimizers, so use only as long as you need them.
Prenatal Vitamins: Our OB, and subsequently our midwives, suggested that we finish our bottle of pre-natal vitamins. The ingredients are beneficial after the birth, and they continure to promote a healthy mom, healthy baby recovery.
Placenta Pills: As I mentioned in last Friday's post, this was definitely the answer and & the solution to any signs of PPD for us. This is one of the areas where you get what you pay for; I encourage you to research your options and find a trustworthy and experienced placenta encapsulation specialist.
Prunes: When we were in the hospital, there was a laxative in our going-home bag. Having worked so hard to keep our children away from harmful substances, we tend to look for a natural remedy that accomplishes the same thing. These are a natural way to get your bowels moving after labor. If mom doesn't like to eat prunes, you can drink prune juice, or hide them in other foods and still get the laxative effects of the prune.
Love & Support!! We tell our coaches never to underestimate their importance, even when they may feel like they are outside the initial mom/baby bond. Coaches bringing water and snacks, coaches changing the baby, coaches holding the baby so that mom can shower and nap, learning how to use the breast pump/accessories and take over some of the sterilizing; basically, coaches can step in and take over any and all chores so that mom can recover, and go for little walks for fresh air and sunshine :)
What did you find helpful in the postpartum period? Anything you would add to the postpartum kit?
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation. Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided. This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.