"Ask me for strength and I will lend not only my hand, but also my heart."
~ Unknown

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Placenta Encapsulation: A Growing Trend

The following is a guest post from our friend Krystal Bartz of Nine Months & Beyond Doula.  Krystal is a placenta encapsulation specialist as well as a birth and postpartum doula living in Lethbridge, AB.

Normally when you think about pregnancy, labor and birth the last thing that comes to your mind is keeping your placenta, let alone taking it home. Some women, after they delivery, might get lucky and their doctor might show them the placenta before it gets taken away by one of the nurses. The placenta is an amazing organ, created by you for your baby, only needed during pregnancy. It is your baby’s life line and it literally connects you to your baby through the umbilical cord.

A ‘new’ trend that is becoming more and more popular is placenta encapsulation. No, it is not eating your placenta raw, as you lay in your hospital bed. Nor is it grinding up your placenta like ground beef and making placenta lasagna that you can serve to your in-laws the first time they come over to visit you and your newest little addition. It is a process that views your placenta as sacred and as a helpful tool to postpartum recovery; hopefully a tool viewed as normal in the near future.

Depending on who you choose to be your encapsulation specialist, she might be an independent specialist who has learned the encapsulation process on her own through extensive research or she might be trained through a course, such as the Placenta Benefits.info online training. I have chosen to be trained through PBi, and have enjoyed the ability to converse with specialists who have been in the business awhile and who have given me a few inside tips and tricks into making the encapsulation process go as smooth as possible.

Being trained through PBi, means there are a few guidelines that I follow, that all PBi specialist follow as a standard. I, as the specialist, do not transport the placenta. This is done by the client, who takes the placenta to her home. I am then called to schedule an appointment for me to start the encapsulation process, in the client’s home. The general idea of how the placenta is prepared is that it is steamed, dehydrated and then ground into a power which is then put into capsules. I, personally, only use vegetarian capsules, but there is berry flavored and even gelatin capsules available if the client so chooses.  All of the techniques use by PBi specialist have been based from techniques used in Traditional Chinese Medicine and the placenta is prepared for a mothers own postpartum use and recovery, not for any other use. 

To start the encapsulation process, the client calls before she is in labor, to discuss any questions or concerns there might be about the encapsulation process. Like any other service I offer, there is a nonrefundable deposit required, after which, the client is then ‘booked’ into my calendar and her information programmed into my cell phone.  I use all of my own supplies for the encapsulation process, and only need the use of the client’s kitchen for the process. The encapsulation process is done over a two day time period, with the dehydration done throughout the nighttime.

There are also specific benefits that the mother will get from having her placenta encapsulation and then her taking the capsules. Benefits such as:
  • contains your own natural hormones
  • perfectly made for you
  • balance your system
  • replenish your depleted iron stores
  • give you more energy
  • lessens postnatal bleeding
  • shown to increase milk production
  • help you have a happier postpartum period
  • hasten return of uterus to pre-pregnancy state
  • can be helpful during menopause
When you choose to encapsulate your placenta through Nine Months & Beyond Doula you will be choosing to have professional and quality service that is done on your time line and allows you flexibility in your lives as new parents. Our placenta encapsulation services include:
  • 80 – 120 placenta capsules; depending on the size of the placenta
  • Cobalt blue jar to store capsules in
  • Dosage guideline and instructions
  • Cord keepsake
  • One visit about a week after to help adjust dosage if need and to discuss any questions
  • One phone calls at about 6 and then at 12 weeks postpartum  for another wellness check up
As an affiliate doula service promotion between Nine Months & Beyond Doula and From Womb to Cradle Doula Services, I am offering all doula clients, working with any doula through From Womb to Cradle, a special discounted rate, that includes traveling to your location and the encapsulation process.  Contact me today to find out how placenta encapsulation can help you in your postpartum recovery.
Krystal Bartz
Birth Doula, Postpartum Doula, Placenta Encapsulation Specialist
Nine Months & Beyond Doula


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