By Jessica Carfagnini, ND of Thunder Bay Naturopathic Clinic
This is a botanical tincture that can be taken 6 weeks prior to delivery. Mother’s cordial
Caulophyllum, Mitchella repens, Chamaelerium luteum, Vibernum opulus (equal parts of individual botanical tincture, can be compounded – see Resources below). Dosage: 1 tsp 3 times/day, take in warm water. Continue until onset of delivery/labour. This tincture helps prepare the uterus for delivery, and also increases the effectiveness of contractions.
If you are past 36 weeks (i.e., 9 months), taking evening primrose oil 500 mg capsules up to 2-4 times a day with food can help initiate labour by increasing prostaglandins in your body.
Walking and light exercise can also encourage the baby to orient her/himself in mom’s pelvis.
Caullophyllum 200 CH – dissolve 2 pellets under your tongue every ½ hour at onset of contractions for 2 hours. After two hours, then only use if the cervix is not dilating, as needed.
Arnica 200 CH – dissolve 2 pellets under your tongue every ½ hour for labour pains.
Pulsatilla 200 CH – dissolve 2 pellets under your tongue every ½ hour to turn the baby or if mom is crying, praying, or feeling clingy during labour.
Kali-carb 200 CH – dissolve 2 pellets under your tongue every ½ hour for low back pain during labour.
Arnica 10 MK – dissolve 2 pellets under your tongue every ½ hour for pain during active labour, after the cervix is almost fully dilated. Also useful for after birth – dissolve 2 pellets under your tongue every 2-3 hours.
Arnica 200 CH – dissolve 2 pellets on baby’s tongue right after birth. This will help with the trauma of the birthing process.
Red raspberry, alfalfa, nettle (dried herb, equal parts), seep 1 tsp in a cup of hot water. Drink with juice or another sugar source for electrolytes and nutrients.
For perineal healing
Cold compresses – for a bruised perineum in the first 12 hours after birth. You can also soak wash clothes in the perineal healing bath (see below), store them in a plastic container in the fridge, and sit on these cool wash clothes over sanitary napkins.
Traumeel or Arnica cream – to be applied around wounds to improve healing of a bruised perineum.
Perineal healing bath:
Calendula officinalis, Hypericum perforatum, Symphytum officinalis (dried herbs, equal parts of each)
2 tbsp of each, add to 3 cups of water. Bring to boil and cover herbs. Let herbs seep for 15 min. Strain the herbs. After it has cooled, transfer the healing bath solution to a squeezy bottle or plant sprayer. Squeeze on perineum after using the washroom. Only use during the first week after labour.
Hypericum oil – to be diluted in olive or almond oil, apply over stitches if necessary.
Riverdale Homeopathic Resources
1331 Danforth Avenue, Toronto, (416) 778-0085
A very comprehensive homeopathic dispensary. They will mail you up to 5 homeopathic remedies (each multi-dose remedy costs $6.95 + tax and shipping):
298 Danforth Avenue, Toronto, (416) 461-8191
A very comprehensive herbal dispensary
Ambrosia Natural Food
55 Doncaster Avenue, Thornhill, (905) 881-7811
They carry a wide range of herbs and supplements.
Body Mind Science Resources
1255 Sheppard Ave. E., Toronto, (416) 502-2665
They carry a selection of homeopathic remedies.