This post aims to provide guidance on what to do during labour pain and postpartum period.
All materials contained in this post are for information purposes only and not a medical advice.
Antenatal care should be followed as adviced by your doctors. Follow the diet chart from doctors as well.
This post doesn't research about customs and sanskars, but will be useful for ladies right from labour pain to post partum and post natal confinement.
This has a detailed description of what to do and what not to do starting from labour pain to postpartum confinement. This is purely a Tamil Brahmin community’s custom. These are the postpartum and postnatal confinement practices and rituals followed by Tamil Brahmin community.
My grandma and mom gave me a hand-written note (in tamil) of the do’s and don’ts during postpartum period for our future family guidance. I AM ATTACHING IT (AS IT IS) IN THE END OF THIS POST. However, if somebody needs a copy you can mail me and I can send you the copy. Though the doctors say one can eat anything, nowadays, follow as much as you can from this post. However, seek your doctor’s advice and your family elders’ advice also.
HOPE YOU WILL FIND THE POST HELPFUL & INFORMATIVE. GOOD LUCK.
WHAT IS A POSTPARTUM PERIOD?
Post partum is the period after delivering a baby. Post partum care is very important for a woman after labour. Post partum practices varies across regions. The period of confinement also varies across regions, from 6 weeks to 6 months and some believe until the restoration of menstrual cycle. The food taken during that period also varies across regions.
In India, elders of a family guide throughout this period to restore the mother’s health after child birth. A special diet known as “PATHIYA SAMAYAL” is supposed to be taken during this period. Doctors in western countries, do not recommend pathiya samayal though. These diet alongwith certain strict regimen should be followed by the new moms to restore their health.
THINGS TO BE AVOIDED DURING THE POSTPARTUM PERIOD:
Avoid pickles, sour curd, hot items, chillies, melons, grapes, spices, and oily food.
Avoid toor dhal as it causes gas problems. Instead use moong dhal.
THINGS WHICH CAN BE USED DAILY DURING THE POSTPARTUM PERIOD:
Betel leaves are rich in calcium and can be used as thamboolam.
Murungai ilai (drumstick leaves) helps in producing breast milk.
Garlic pods boiled in milk can be taken daily. This also increases the production of breast milk.
The vagina should be cleaned with lukewarm water as and when possible during the 1st week after delivery.
Breast feed. Keep your nipples clean so that the baby doesn’t catch any infections.
Have a warm bath daily and not warm shower.
For 1st 30 days, the stomach should be wrapped tightly with a large piece of clean cloth. This helps in compression of the abdomen (lower abdomen in particular). THIS AVOIDS THE PRESENCE OF HOLLOW SPACE IN THE ABDOMEN REGION.
Rub olive oil, Vitamin E oil or gingelly oil on the skin (especially abdomen region).
Food need to be fresh. Say “NO” to processed foods.
Food should be warm. It should be neither too hot nor dry.
Food should be prepared with digestive spices such as cumin seeds, caraway seeds, ginger, garlic, fenugreek, mustard, turmeric, pepper, and fresh curd. Avoid sour curd.
Take ghee internally.
Avoid high sugar and caffeine. THIS WILL LEAD TO WEIGHT GAIN.
DEALING WITH POSTNATAL DEPRESSION AND STRESS:
Avoid physical stress and fatigue.
Take rest. Sleep well. Take a nap while your baby naps.
Do not do the laundry work and other chores.
Eat a healthy diet. Take light and balanced diet with nourishing green vegetables.
Do pelvic exercises after six weeks. THIS WILL KEEP YOU IN GOOD SHAPE.
Isolation increases depression. Stay in touch with friends.
LINKS TO PATHIYA SAMAYAL:
The Pathiya thaligai (samayal) is according to the practices followed in an Iyengar community. Click on the names of the recipes to get the link.
DURING LABOUR PAIN : Jeeraga kashayam
SPECIAL RECIPES TO BE TAKEN DURING POST PARTUM PERIOD:
Idli OR bread slices
Dosai with less oil
Manathakali vathal kozhambu
Simple dhal made with moong
Any curry tempered in ghee
Ela vadaam (roasted in direct flame)
Curd rice with Manathakkali vathal OR thumattikaai vathal fried in ghee
Prasava lehiyam (after lunch)
Soups in the evening
Rice with milk (Paal saadham) during night with Narthangai salt pickle
HAND WRITTEN NOTE GIVEN BY MY GRANDMA AND MOM : RIGHT FROM LABOUR PAIN ALONGWITH THE DETAILS OF HOW TO DO PUNYAGAVACHANAM AND ALSO THE CUSTOMS & PRACTICES DURING POSTPARTUM.