Perineal Pain Relief
After the birth of a baby, many women may be surprised at the intensity of perineal pain. Even if a woman receives no stitches during birth, she may feel tender and sore. Common herbal and medical remedies exist to help ease this discomfort.
Preparing Your Perineum
Few women think to prepare their perineums for birth; however, this area undergoes a great deal, and it’s important to be proactive in preparing this part of your body. Some heath-care providers recommend perineal massage with oil. Also, Kegel exercises can help to strengthen the pelvic floor.
Taking Care of Stitches
Many women tear either naturally or surgically through an episiotomy. Caring for these stitches is relatively easy. Simply soak your perineal area in a warm bath or a sitz bath two to three times a day. Also, when urinating, use a peri squirt bottle to squirt warm water on your stitches to keep them clean. Some women do experience a stinging sensation the first few times they urinate after giving birth.
For women with tears, or even those who are experiencing discomfort, some herbs may provide relief. Placing herbs such as Calendula, Plantain or Arnica in a sachet for your sitz bath can help soothe the sensitive area. These herbs may also be used to make oil infusions and rubs.
To help ease perineum pain, some women choose to take over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. In a recent study from the University of British Columbia, both were found to be effective; however ibuprofen had fewer side effects and is easier to administer.
Resuming Sexual Intercourse
Because the perineum is extra sensitive after birth, many women wonder how they will ever feel well enough to have sex again. Most health-care providers recommend waiting six weeks before resuming sexual activity. Using over-the-counter lubrication can help ease discomfort, as well.