Bringing home a new baby should be a joyful and wonderful time for the mother. In China the month after delivery is known as the Golden Month. This is the time when the new mother is afforded every good attention by the family members, particularly the other female members of the family such as mother, sisters, mother in law, sisters in law. This is done for a very good reason to allow the new mother recover from the delivery, to settle in with the new baby, and if she is breast feeding to allow space and time for this to take place so that the mother and baby can develop a routine without the distraction of having to care for the rest of the family.
However even with this attention things can go wrong. In the West by and large we have left this type of attention go and socially our lives are more stressful and this is also the case with new mothers. Many women find themselves rushed into getting back into the “normal” routine they had prior to the delivery of the baby. This brings consequences for the mother’s health as well as the other health issues that can impinge on the new mother’s health. Below is a list of what is considered normal in a woman after delivery and what she can expect in terms of time in returning to her pre pregnant state from a biomedicine point of view.
- Puerperium (puer peer ium) is the term for the six week period post delivery.
- Normally the body returns completely to a non pregnant state over this time.
- At 2 weeks post partum cervical os is closed.
- Vagina returns to pre delivery size 3-6 months post partum.
- Normal Lochia (post partum bleeding) is red for first 3-4 days, pale brown for next 7-10 days and yellowish/white for next 2-6 weeks.
- Commonly postpartum women will retain urine because of insensitivity to pelvic peripheral nerves.
- Abdominal muscles remain stretched and lack tone for 8-10 weeks.
- GI tract returns to normal over first 6 weeks.
It is well recognised now that where possible breast feeding is best for both mother and baby. The baby receives nourishment from the mother and some of the mothers acquired immunity. The mother in turn gets the benefit from the release of certain hormones which aid in her recovery. However breast milk is ostensibly made from the mothers blood and in effect uses the mothers own energy and nourishment. In the clinic we will provide the best advice to breast feeding mothers and treat to minimise the feelings of tiredness and or exhaustion that sometimes accompany breast feeding In fact feelings of exhaustion are a danger signal to any mother whether breast feeding or not and should be addressed.
On this page you will find the Chinese terms for post partum illnesses and their English translations
TCM Postpartum Diseases (Chan Hou Bing):
- Chan Hou Xue Chu (Postpartum haemorrhage) Chan Hou Fa Re (Post partum infection)
- Chan Hou E Lou Bu Xia (Retention of Lochia) Chan Hou E Lou Bu Zhi (Persistant Lochia)
- Chan Hou Xue Yun (Post partum dizziness)
- Chan Hou Zhong Feng (Postpartum Windstroke Convulsions)
- Chan Zhou Zi gong Tuo Chu (Postpartum Uterine Prolapse) Chan Hou Bu Yu (Postpartum Aphonia)
- Chan Hou Xie Tong (Postpartum Ribside pain) Chan Hou Yao tong (Postpartum low back pain)
- Chan Hou Shen Tong (Postpartum body pain) Chan Hou Tou Tong (Postpartum Headache)
- Chan Hou Xin Tong (Postpartum Heart Pain) Chan Hou Ke Sou (Postpartum Cough)
- Chan Hou Qi Chuan (Postpartum Dyspnoea) Chan Hou Ke (Postpartum Thirst)
- Chan Hou Fu Zhong (Postpartum oedema) Chan Hou Nao Xue (Postpartum haematuria)
- Chan Hou Da Bian Chu Xue (Postpartum haemafaecia) Chan Hou Zi Han Dao Han (Postpartum sweating)
- Chan Hou Da Bian Nan (Postpartum Constipation ) Chan Hou Xie Xie (Postpartum Diarrhoea)
- Chan Hou Xiao Bian Shi Jia (Postpartum Urinary Stress Incontinence) Chan Hou Niao Zhu Liu (Postpartum Urinary Retention)
- Chan Hou Ru Lao (Postpartum Exhaustion) Chan Hou Que Ru (Postpartum glactorrhoea)
- Chan Hou ru Tou Po Sui (Postpartum areolar Ecezema) Chan Hou Ru Yong (Postpartum Mastitis)
- Chan Hou ru zi Chu (Postpartum breast leakage)
- Chan Hou Jing Ji Huang Hu Xu Fan (Postpartum depression)
Postpartum conditions which we treat at the clinic and their explanation:
- Postpartum Haemorrhage – Bleeding that is continuing longer or excessively from normal.
- Postpartum infection – Only in conjunction with Western Medicine Treatment
- Retention of Lochia – If Lochia remains 7-10 days can cause infection and needs to be treated same as post-partum infection.
- Postpartum dizziness – Light headedness or inability to stand up post partum
- Uterine Prolapse – uterus slips from it’s normal position, or drops into vagina or slips so that some tissue drops outside vagina.
- Postpartum Low back pain – pain in lumbar spine that radiates laterally and often distally down sciatic nerve.
- Postpartum Oedema – swelling in any part of the body after delivery (usually lower limbs). Unilateral oedema is a red flag.
- Postpartum haematuria – blood in urine, can be a number of causes, will need investigation.
- Postpartum haemafaecia – blood streaked stools, anal leaking of blood after defecation. Usually due to trauma during delivery.
- Postpartum urinary stress incontinence
- Postpartum Urinary Retention
- Postpartum depression – postnatal depression. 20% of all post natal mothers
- Postpartum galactorrhoea – Insufficient lactation
- Postpartum areola eczema – important to get treated as baby can pass infection from mouth to cracked tissue causing mastitis.
- Mastitis – infection of the mammary gland postpartum.
- Postpartum breast leakage.
In relation to any cancers we will work only with Western Medicine Treatment.
Oncology in TCM
TCM works synergistically with Western Medicine/Biomedicine to alleviate symptoms irrespective of the disease stage and progression and does not damage the Vital Qi or reinforce pathogenic factors.
Our clinic is based on one word REST
R = Respect for our clients. Shown by being Professional, Courteous, and above all mindful in our endeavours.
E = Education. Continued education and the provision of responsible up-to-date information to our patients.
S = Sensitivity to the needs, requirements fears and concerns of our patients
T = Treatment. All of the above leading to the best treatment and best advice we can provide for our patients.