As mothers, we focus a lot preparing for the birth of our babies. From the packing of our birth bags or preparing our birthing room at home, to the gathering of the essentials for our baby. We want to feel so prepared so that our baby has everything he or she needs to enter this world. All of this is very important of course but how many of us spend time preparing for our own postnatal recovery? I know I certainly didn't when I entered motherhood for the first time and I really wish I had! Based on my years of experience supporting new born mothers I have put together a positive postnatal plan that you can find here positive postnatal plan
There are a few ways that you can prepare for your postnatal recovery and one very simple activity that I will share is making and freezing padsicles. You may or may not of heard of them but any new born mother that has used them have LOVED them! So what are padsicles and why are they a must for postnatal recovery?
A padsicle is a frozen sanitary pad soaked with something soothing such as aloe gel or a healing postnatal herb soak. With a padsicle you have the benefit of the cushion of a maternity pad and an ice pack. After birth the padsicle will sooth swollen tissue, reduce inflammation, provide pain relief and even provides relief from haemorrhoids (a common pregnancy and postnatal complaint). Depending on what you soak into the pad it can help prevent infection. You can buy postnatal healing herbs for this purpose or a sitz bath from my store here Postnatal bath tea
To make a padsicle you will need:
- Maternity pads, choose the overnight options as they hold more liquid and have better cushioning
- Healing herbs or aloe gel
- Spray bottle, you wont want to completely saturate the pad as it needs to hold your blood too. A spray bottle helps you control the spread. For a stronger more healing dose you can pour 1/4 cup onto pad
- Large freezer bags
How to: Postnatal herb option
Once you have gathered all you need prepare the postnatal solution according to the instructions. Steep for longer for a stronger solution. Allow to cool then strain the tea into a spray bottle. Spritz the pads so they feel wet but not completely saturated. Fold them back up and place them into the freezer bag. save some solution in the spray bottle to use as a 'spritz for bits', great for using after you visit the toilet!
Lavender and witch hazel:
- Lavender flowers
- witch hazel leaf
- aloe gel
- night time maternity pads
- large freezer bags
- Steep 4tbsp witch hazel and 1tbsp lavender in 1 pint of boiled water for 20 mins.
- Cool then strain into a spray bottle with 1tbsp aloe gel then shake
- spray the solution onto the pads not completely soaking but wet
- fold then transfer to freezer bag
How to Use a Padsicle
When you are ready to use your padsicles, follow these guidelines.
- Change your padsicle at least every four hours. You many find that you need to change it more often, depending on blood flow.
- Use up to four padsicles per day. If you find that the padsicle is a bit too chilly right out of the freezer, let it “thaw” for a few minutes.
- Use padsicles for up to six weeks, or until your postnatal bleeding has lessened or stopped.
Notes on alternative use: If using padsicles to help treat the symptoms of haemorrhoids, some mothers use them for up to four months. Alternatively, you could also use a peri spray/ spritz for bits to treat the symptoms of persistent haemorrhoids.
I will leave you with this and I have said similar many times before... A healthy baby is NOT all that matters. You matter, how you feel matters, your comfort and recovery matters. These padsicles are just a small reminder of that very important fact.