06 Nov Placenta Encapsulation: What, Why, Where, Who, How
Considering it for yourself or simply wanting to understand what’s going on with placenta encapsulation? Perfect, because this information is for you.
WHAT is placenta encapsulation?
Placenta encapsulation is the process by which a placenta is taken from it’s raw state and steamed, dehydrated, ground, and placed into empty capsules for consumption by the person who grew it during their pregnancy.
It is a rapidly growing practice in North American culture, resulting in the growing demand for the professional service and safe, qualified Specialists to provide the service.
It is also an unregulated specialty, which is controversial in some circles.
Being unregulated allows for:
- creative freedom among those offering the service, which is lovely.
- a lack of industry wide safety standards and protocols, which is problematic.
WHY would someone encapsulate?
Why you might decide to encapsulate will depend on what potential benefits resonate with you the most. Remember! It is not right for everybody, and that’s ok.
Here are the most common reasons I have been told over the past 8-10 years:
- a desire to lower their chances of developing Postpartum Depression
- a desire support their breast milk supply
- a desire to heal more quickly after giving birth
- a desire for more energy post-birth
- because they want to see if their postpartum recovery is improved with placenta consumption, compared to previous postpartum recoveries.
WHERE should a placenta be encapsulated?
A placenta should always be encapsulated in the home of it’s owner. Plain and simple.
The reasons for that are very straight forward.
- When the placenta has remained in the custody and possession of it’s owner, the person consuming the capsules can be confident that they are in fact, theirs.
- It is vital that control over the storage, transportation, and timing of placenta processing remain with you, the owner.
- When this service occurs in the presence of the placenta’s owner, full transparency exists during each step of the process and higher professional standards are maintained.
- In the owner’s home, bacterial and microbial life that is present is that which is already familiar to the one who will be consuming the placenta.
The bottom line: Insisting that your placenta be processed in your home is the only way to eliminate as many variables around safety and professionalism, as possible.
WHO should encapsulate a placenta?
Only trained, and/or certified professionals should be encapsulating your placenta. This means seeking out someone who has completed a thorough, in person training that taught them the full process, using a real placenta.
As a seasoned Doula and Postpartum Placenta Specialist, I’ve seen many trainings and experienced too many that are sub par. The only training for placenta encapsulation that I will recommend to an aspiring Specialist, or stand behind when speaking with a new family seeking a Specialist, is Placenta Prep.
It is fact based, designed to keep both Specialists and families safe, as well as respectful of our limitations due to the current lack of scientific studies which support the practice.
HOW should a placenta be encapsulated?
Every placenta should be stored, handled, and encapsulated with great care, considering the health and wellness of both client and Specialist above all else. Making sure it does not leave the client’s possession is an important first step.
We do not currently have current, reputable scientific studies that prove the safety or efficacy of modern placenta encapsulation.
But demand for this service is on the rise, regardless. Because demand is on the rise, we must strive to perform this service with the utmost consideration for safety.
How your placenta should be processed is with the strictest standards around:
- Training and Certification expectations. Though not regulated or legally required, this is a crucial step to consider, when searching for a professional.
- Blood Borne Pathogen knowledge and safety.
- Strict guidelines around steaming, temperatures, workspace cleanliness and preparation, when and when not to encapsulate, who transports a placenta and who does not, etc.
- Personalized service that includes you, the client and your family.
Only you can decide if placenta encapsulation is right for you. If you are in the Pacific Northwest and you’d like to know more from us, I encourage you to reach out.
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