Saving your placenta after having a baby is a trendy thing to do right now. They say that it’s a prime source of nutrients, which has spurred a movement that involves taking it home and eating it. Thinking you want to give it a try? Not so fast! There are some things you should know about this practice before jumping on the bandwagon. Before you grab that placenta and run, here’s what you need to know about saving it.
1. Discuss Your Wants
I’ve given birth three times and never even saw the placenta. That’s because standard practice is to toss it in the biohazard bin. After all, your baby doesn’t need it anymore. So, if you plan to save yours, make sure you tell the nurses and your doctor so that they are aware that it should be saved. If you have a written birth plan, make sure you include this as part of it.
2. Hospitals May Be Reluctant
It’s your placenta and if you want it, you should have it, right? That may not be the case. Some hospitals are leery of allowing you to remove your placenta from the building because of its biohazard risk. Because it’s filled with blood, it could be a sanitation or health related risk that many hospitals would rather not deal with. Find out before you’re in labor if you can keep it or not so that you can seek alternate options if you need to.
3. Bring Your Own Containers
The labor and delivery room is not a full service restaurant and your nurses aren’t going to lovingly bag up your placenta for you. In fact, if you want it, you may have to take that job into your own hands. At the least, you’ll have to bring your own zip top bags and a large airtight container to carry it home in. Don’t have those things? You might not get to keep the placenta after all.
4. Postpartum Depression Protection
Here’s one of the top reasons that women choose to eat their placenta after birth. Some research says that it helps protect against developing postpartum depression. This is because the placenta is a storehouse for the hormones that take a nosedive after delivery. I never would have thought to eat my placenta, but after suffering postpartum anxiety and depression after each of my babies, I might have given it a try, had I known.
Eating anything that comes out of your body isn’t exactly appetizing, right? That’s why most women who eat their placenta have it encapsulated into gel caps that they can simply swallow. To have this done, you’ll need to find a reputable place so that you can be sure you’re getting your own placenta and that it is processed safely.
6. Only Eat Your Own
While eating your own placenta may have some benefits, it’s never a good idea to eat anyone else’s. This puts you at risk of disease. That’s why if you decide to take yours home and have it processed for eating, it pays to make sure you find someone certified to do it. Never, ever eat placenta from someone else. Yuck!
7. Besides Eating
Eating placenta is gaining in popularity, but there are other things you can do with it to. Placenta can also be transformed into skincare products that promise to moisturize your skin and infuse it with nutrients. It’s also touted as a way to fight aging. Placenta teddy bears and placenta wall art are other options.
Would you save your placenta? Why or why not?