In Singapore, postpartum period is considered to be a crucial season of a woman’s life that has lifetime implications for her health and well-being. Postpartum care practices also known as confinement practices are often passed down through many generations.
Postpartum care primarily consists of external, internal and psychological or mental care. External care concerns the visible body and entails issues such as coping with changes in body shape, and activities such as breastfeeding. Internal care refers to dealing with issues such as fatigue, body pains, post-delivery cramps, or digestion problems. Mental care concerns coping with emotional swings. Issues like anxiety, hormonal changes, and self-esteem issues.
For a new mother to have a happy postpartum period these three aspects must be taken care of and here’s how you can do that.
Eat Confinement Foods
Confinement food menus have been tested over the centuries and are proven to be nutritious, revitalizing and energizing to new mothers.
Some ingredients such as Chinese Wolfberry, Dried Longan and Ginseng are commonly used to brew warm drinks that are known to boost production of breast milk, revitalize the body, counter depression and boost your immune system.
Do not worry about the weight gain, just don’t overdo it. Breastfeeding is actually an excellent way to lose weight. You use about 500 kcal a day, which translates to about 300 grams of body weight lost just by breastfeeding.
Have Ample Rest
Chinese and Indian confinement rules have strict requirements for the mother to remain rested as much as possible and to some extent even restrict them to full-time bed rest.
Rest is necessary but should not be taken to the extreme. We say, leave all the strenuous activity to your partner or the confinement nanny but do some exercise. Gentle activity such as walking or a few yoga stretches will aid blood flow, healing of the uterus and restoration of your shape.
Maintain Proper Hygiene
Childbirth is a traumatic experience for mothers that often leaves them weakened not just physically but also in their immune system.
Therefore, ensure people you come into contact with observe strict hygiene rules. Also, you can ask your confinement nanny to ensure that your environs are kept in top hygienic conditions to prevent infections.
Don’t Be Shy to Talk with Other Mums
Chinese confinement rules restrict a new mother’s contact with other people. However, this is a rule you can bend a little.
Have contact with other people, especially older mums or other mums and loved ones. If you are not sure about something, ask questions, get recommendations for confinement food menus and talk about your emotions.
Talking with others is the best way to keep anxiety and postpartum depression at bay.
Spoil Yourself with a Postnatal Massage
This is not essential to having a happy postpartum period but it’s amazing on your body and mind. Moreover, it stimulates blood flow and the immune system.
Indian and Malay confinement rules practice it and it’s a fine reward for a new mom. So, go ahead and schedule yourself an appointment because you deserve a good rest.
These tips may seem like nothing much, but they are simple to do and beneficial in the postpartum period. But most importantly, they are very helpful in making a smoother journey for new mothers.