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Pregnancy Tip: Herbs Commonly Used In Pregnancy, Labor And Postpartum

Shepherd’s Purse

Shepherd’s Purse is an annual, weed, that grows to about 20 inches in height and is easily recognized by the heart-shaped pods that form near the top. It grows in sunny areas throughout the United States.

The entire plant is used medicinally mainly as a anti-hemmorrhagic by coagulating the blood and constricting the veins. Historically, the juice of the plant was put on a ball of cotton and used to plug the nose and stop a bad nosebleed. It was also used to increase urine and menstrual flow and increase vitamin C in the diet. For maternity use, it is most often used in a tincture from fresh plants which not only stops bleeding but also causes uterine contractions. If an infusion is wanted, one need only steep the chopped plant material for about an hour as it give up the medicinal properties readily in water.

USES

To provide calcium: eat the leaves.

To control bleeding following a miscarriage: give 10-20 drops of the tincture sublingually as needed.

To build up clotting factors in the body prenatally: give 15-20 drops once or twice a day. To control bleeding after birtrh and delivery in the placenta:

give 20-40 drops sublingually. It can work in five seconds. or give a

combination tincture.

give 20 drops each of Blue Cohosh and Shepherd’s Purse in aid in

returning the uterus to pre-birth size if uterus is still large at 4-6 weeks postpartum:

give Shepherd’s Purse and Blue Cohosh tea along with recommendation for

rest, lots of breastfeeding and better nutrition.

To provide prophylactic treatment of vitamin K to a

newborn: give 3 drops of tincture or extract to the newborn by mouth.

CAUTIONS

If planning to make your own tincture, pick the plant immediately before tincturing as it loses its medicinal properties quickly once it dries

Care should be taken if used for postpartum hemmorrhage as Shepherd’s Purse can cause large clots fto form which can prevent the uterus from clamping down and contracting leading to continued bleeding.