Each Wednesday I will highlight an herb, vitamin, essential oil, homeopathic remedy or treatment that is helpful in the postpartum period. For the next nine weeks I will begin my 'Wellness Wednesday' posts by highlighting a medicinal herb found in my Herbal Sitz Bath remedy (see recipe below.)
This week my focus will be on the beautiful and fragrant Calendula flower. You likely know the Calendula Officinalis plant by its common name, “pot marigold”. There are many varieties of marigolds so it's important not to confuse Calendula Officinalis with other varieties that don't carry the same health benefits. Medicinally this flower is best known for it's antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and wound healing properties.
Here are just a few of the ways you could use this lovely herb...
Pregnancy: During the last 6 weeks of pregnancy, Calendula infused oil is wonderful for perineal massage to prepare for birth (see recipe below.)
Childbirth: In labor, Calendula oil can be used to aid in the massage and stretching of the perineal area to allow the baby to be born with minimal to no tearing.
Postpartum Period: In the weeks following birth, Calendula is a lovely addition to the bath it can help prevent infection, reduce swelling, and speed up healing of soreness, tears, episiotomy, and perennial bruising.
Calendula oil recipe:
*1 cup dried organic Calendula Flower
*2 cups organic Olive Oil (cold pressed, unrefined)
*1/4 cup Evening Primrose Oil
*A clean pint sized glass jar with a lid
*Put dried organic Calendula in clean pint sized glass jar.
*Add your organic Olive oil and Evening Primrose oil to cover the petals.
*Set out in a sunny place to infuse herb for four-six weeks.
*Drain herb from the oil and store the oil in a glass container with lid for up to one year.
Herbal Sitz Bath Recipe: (This recipe yields 3 baths)
* 1/3 cup organic Calendula Flowers
* 1/4 cup organic Shepherd’s Purse
* 1/4 cup organic Uva Ursi
* 1/3 cup organic Comfrey Leaf
* 1/2 cup organic Lavender Flowers
* 1/4 cup organic Plantain Leaf
* 1/2 cup organic Red Raspberry Leaf
* 1/3 cup organic Yarrow Flower
* 1/4 cup organic Burdock
* Mix all dry herbs in glass jar with lid (can be stored in cool dark room up to 1 year)
* For Bath: add 1 cup of the mixed herbs to 2 quarts of boiling water. Remove water from heat and allow to steep a minimum of 20 minutes. Strain the herbs and add to the bath soaking 20 minutes. You can make batches in advance and store in a sealed container in fridge.
* Brew the above ratios and add to a Peri Bottle for use after going to the bathroom.
Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional and am not prescribing any specific treatment. You should always check with your medical professional before introducing any new remedy into your regimen. I am not liable for any contraindications that may occur as a result of above remedies.