In TICM we have a fourth trimester which is the time following childbirth. In TICM, Chinese and Islamic culture and so many cultures throughout the world, specific postpartum care for the mother is imperative yet remains quite overlooked here in the west such as UK, USA and Australia.
A caesarean section not only gives way to your new baby, it is a major abdominal surgery, which affects your Kidneys like any surgery. TICM can help support c-section recovery through nourishing the body and replenishing energy, Blood and fluids as well as provide emotional support.
Acupuncture: after a week or so of being home, acupuncture can help support the nervous system and keep Blood and Qi (vital energy) flowing freely. This helps emotions not become stuck in the body and keeps you more present. Acupuncture can help symptoms such as local scar pain or numbness, pelvic pain, pains with urination and bowel movements, painful periods and postpartum depression. Speak to your doctor to see if they will do a home visit.
Moxibustion: is one of the most healing tools to replenish the body. This is when moxa (dried herb) is burned near specific acupuncture points for stimulation. This is used for the elderly or people recovering from traumatic events. After childbirth, your body has used a ton of energy (Qi), fluids and Blood. This needs to be replenished and moxibustion can give the body both Qi and Yang energy to support healing for the new mother.
Nutrition: focusing on warm and easily digestible foods helps the body spend its resources on healing as opposed to struggling breaking down hard to digest foods. Beneficial foods during this time are bone broths, seaweed soups, stews, congee, eggs, oatmeal, porridge, goji berries, ginger, black vinegar, ginger powder tea.
Herbs: herbal medicine work wonders for postpartum recovery about 2 months after the c-section. This herbal combination recharges the body postpartum, alleviates postpartum ache and pains and strengthens the entire body. Du Chong and Wu Wei Zi are herbs to restore and revitalise the body as well.
Warmth: keep the Stomach and feet warm in all regards. Wear socks and cover up at all times. After surgery and childbirth your body is more receptive to pathogens especially cold and wind. Cold and wind block Blood and Qi from moving freely which results in pain and even constipation.
Rest: in TICM, we focus on conserving Qi, not expending it. Rest as frequent and often as you can even if you feel like you have energy to spare. Let your body use the energy to heal so you will be healthier in the long run.
Emotions: don't become emotional or suppress them. Make sure to have supportive people around you and even join groups or look for doulas who can support with c-sections.