Post Natal Sitz Bath
One of the most important healing treatments that you can give yourself is a post partum sitz bath. After a vaginal delivery, I recommend taking a post partum sitz bath at least once a day, for at least 2 weeks. This is a soothing bath that is 1-2 inches deep, filled with a tea of healing herbs that will speed up your recovery. I know how hectic the fist few weeks can be after having a baby, but taking the time (at least 15 min) each day to soak will get you up on your feet much faster.
There are a few companies that make great sitz baths. They are each slightly different in their ingredients, but they will all help heal mother's perineal/vaginal area, decrease swelling, soothe hemorrhoids, and help prevent and fight infection. Here are my top brands to use (and I recommend buying it BEFORE you have the baby!!)
HerbLore (I like this one the best, but due to the garlic in the formula, it can smell a little bit like pickles)
wish garden herbs (very soothing formula)
There are a few ways to use the sitz bath:
The first is to take an actual sitz bath. You can purchase an insert that goes over your toilet for easy soaking, but I recommend just filling your bathtub with about 2-5 inches of water and soaking that way (15+ min). Be sure not to overfill the tub, as it will dilute the remedy.
The second method is to fill a peri-bottle with the solution and using it to clean your perineal area every time you go to the bathroom. Then, pat dry (it's recommended not to wipe the area for the first few weeks).
The third method is to soak a menstrual pad and freeze it for a cool, soothing treatment. I don't recommend this method, as the cold can actually slow the healing process, but if you are experiencing excessive swelling, this method may be soothing to you.
Instructions for making the sitz bath can be found on the package. I recommend making 2-3 days worth at a time, and keeping it in the refrigerator for easy access.