Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Honey for perineal healing

I just read this great little tidbit in the Midwifery Today E-News and had to share!
"Raw honey is a great remedy for first-degree [perineal] tears. Honey's thick consistency forms a barrier defending the wound from outside infections. The moistness allows skin cells to grow without creating a scar, even if a scab has already formed. Meanwhile, the sugars extract dirt and moisture from the wound, which helps prevent bacteria from growing, while the acidity of honey also slows or prevents the growth of many bacteria. An enzyme that bees add to honey reacts with the wound's fluids and breaks down into hydrogen peroxide, a disinfectant. Honey also acts as an anti-inflammatory and pain killer and prevents bandages from sticking to wounds. Laboratory studies have shown that honey has significant antibacterial qualities. Significant clinical observations have demonstrated the effectiveness of honey as a wound healing agent. Glucose converted into hyaluronic acid at the wound surface forms an extracellular matrix that encourages wound healing. Honey is also considered antimicrobial."
—Demetria Clark
Excerpted from "Herbs for Postpartum Perineum Care: Part I," The Birthkit, Issue 46
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It's my hope that I'll never need to try it out ('cause I'm NOT going to tear ever again), but I thought it might be helpful to someone out there. I sure could have used this information after my previous births!


Fig said...

Just to be clear . . . we're talking about putting honey in our hoo-hoos here, right? Wouldn't that be sort of awkward and, um, sticky? Not that I don't think it's fascinating and a lovely natural remedy - I just think it sounds kind of messy?

Buscando la Luz said...

Yeah... wherever the tears are. After childbirth, nothing really seems very awkward or messy. ;-) And it's already pretty messy down there anyway with the normal postpartum bleeding. You gotta wear, like, diapers afterward anyway, so the honey wouldn't be getting anywhere important. :-)