How to make a simple postpartum sitz bath
A postpartum sitz bath is an easy way to help a new mama relax and recover. The primary purpose of a postpartum sitz bath is to relieve discomfort in the perineal region. Additionally, the experience of having a bath prepared with care, and some quiet relax time alone is pure bliss.
Don’t be fooled by kits with plastic attachments for the toilet – the preferred approach is a shallow bath of what is essentially an herbal tea for the body.
A postpartum doula – or a knowledgeable friend or relative (that’s YOU with this guide!) – can prepare a sitz bath during a time that makes most sense for the new mother to enjoy its benefits. Once a day, soaking the bottom in soothing and healing herbal medicine is great.
It’s important that the level of the water in a clean tub be no more than will soak the perineum while mom rests on her sacrum and low back with support.
Here’s everything you need to prepare a postpartum sitz bath if mom is available and ready to enjoy it.
Sitz bath recipe
Mix the following herbs evenly and keep them in a dry container:
Sitz Bath Step by Step instructions
Prepare the herbal concentrate
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Turn off the heat. Add a large fistful of herbs (around 1 cup) to the hot water. You can use the recipe provided above, or, you can also use pre-mixed sitz bath herbs found online or at a local herbal apothecary but they must be specifically for postpartum sitz bath.
Allow the herbal mixture to steep for 20+ minutes. This “tea” is now ready.
Prepare the tub
While waiting for the water to heat, scrub out the bathtub with a mild cleaning product and rinse thoroughly.
When momma is ready to bathe, strain the herbal concentrated tea into the plugged tub. Use a clean wire mesh kitchen strainer. (The water in the tub should be relatively clear of any dried herb matter.) Add 3-4 inches of water to a tolerably very warm temperature.
As you’re adding the tap water, keep checking the temperature and adjusting as it fills.
Enjoy the soak
As soon as the water is the correct depth, have mom gently get in, recline comfortably, and relax. It’s ok for her to feed the baby while in tub. Be ready to help mom get in and out of the bath safely, with support, to avoid straining or slipping.
If she can soak quietly for 20+ minutes, that would be so nice for her!
And for the person who is helping curate this experience for mom, if you don’t have your arms full with a sweet babe, go ahead and use the time while mom’s in the tub to prepare a snack tray to leave at her bedside.