Castor oil packs are a simple and remarkably effective self-care tool for new moms, especially for those recovering from cesarean sections (I’ve had two!). Here is a quick run-down on the benefits and how to incorporate this practice into your routine, including a list of supplies needed.
What is castor oil?
Castor oil has unique properties that have shown to reduce inflammation and pain According to Healthline: “Castor oil is high in ricinoleic acid, a fatty acid that has been shown to help reduce pain and inflammation in test-tube and animal studies.”
- A piece of flannel large enough to cover the intended area (nothing fancy here)
- Hot water bottle
- A Tupperware or plastic bag to keep the oil-soaked flannel in between uses
- A piece of plastic to place between the oil-soaked flannel and the hot water bottle
- Other suggestions here
- Fill your hot water bottle with hot water (remember it won’t be touching your skin so it can be a bit hotter than normal)
- Take your piece of flannel and apply a generous amount of castor oil to it (it will gradually get more saturated over time, that’s fine)
- Find a comfortable position, depending on the area your applying the pack to
- Place the oil-soaked flannel directly on your skin, layer it with the plastic, and place the hot water bottle on top of that
- Leave on for 45-60 minutes
- Castor oil will stain so be mindful of that
- I do my castor oil packs in bed while I’m reading and preparing for sleep