After childbirth, you can bank on your perineal area (the swath between the vagina and anus) becoming irritated, sore and swollen and, unfortunately, even the joy of holding your newborn won’t be able to mask the discomfort. Oftentimes new moms are so caught up in planning for a baby that they forget to prepare for postpartum recovery, but we’re here to remind you to stock up on peri bottles, numbing sprays and postpartum ice packs — you’re going to need them.
Pre-childbirth you might be horrified by the idea of planting an ice pack in between your legs, but post-childbirth the gesture will sound less sacrilege. Cooling technologies are a blessing, not a curse, especially when your already sensitive lady parts are now aching and inflamed. As if that weren’t enough of a nuisance, your breasts are likely going to undergo their own bout of swelling, too, as breast milk starts coming in strong. In these instances, ice packs can offer you some much-needed relief and help reduce swelling in the process.
And while the concept of an ice pack is pretty obvious, you’re not going to be wrapping ice cubes in a towel or stuffing them in a plastic baggie here. Though both are options, postpartum ice packs were designed specifically for new moms with features such as absorbent capabilities, as well as cooling and heating technologies to really cater to these recovering areas.
Our mission at SheKnows is to empower and inspire women, and we only feature products we think you’ll love as much as we do. Please note that if you purchase something by clicking on a link within this story, we may receive a small commission of the sale.
1. Gentlepak Hot & Cold Perineal Paks
Just how fabulous are Gentlepak’s postpartum ice packs? Let us count the ways. First of all, the vibrant pink packaging is precious and uplifting, so while you might be in pain, at least your recovery tools are encouraging. Second, these ice packs double as a hot compress, so keep one or two in the freezer, and one tucked away in the included drawstring bag to warm in the microwave or boil in water when necessary.
The packs are made from polyvinyl and the material contours to your body. Filled with a gel that stays soft (even when frozen), just slip the pad into your underwear for relief that lasts up to four times longer than competing products. Plus, once the postpartum pain subsides, the entire family can use Gentlepak’s ice packs for all sorts of ailments.
2. Medline Perineal Cold Pack
Medline’s Perineal Cold Packs might look familiar to veteran mamas who’ve already experienced one childbirth as they’re super similar to the ones your hospital provides post labor. These postpartum ice packs are disposable, so once you’ve used it, toss it. They are best for at night or lounging on the couch, as there is no adhesive strip to keep them in place, but you can’t beat the convenience of the crack-the-pack technology as the cold therapy kicks in in a matter of seconds — no advance planning required.
3. Pariday TendHer Feminine Cold Packs
PariDay is another beloved postpartum ice pack. This product was made by veteran mamas and offers both hot and cold technology so you can choose which temperature provides you the most relief. Your purchase comes with two gel pads made with medical-grade film and five washable sleeves. They can be tucked into your underwear for perineal relief, placed over C-section incisions or against sore breasts. Note: Gel packs are made with BPA- and phthalate-free film and are reusable for up to eight weeks.