Proper postpartum care is crucial in order to prevent complications after pregnancy. Postpartum care should be tailored to the family’s needs and culture.
This is why cultural relevance is so important in postpartum care.
Mental health and meal support are both critical pieces of ensuring a healthy mother and baby experience. By including cultural relevance in your postpartum care plans, you can close the gap on the extensive physical and mental health disparities that many BIPOC mothers and their newborns face.
The postpartum period is a time of great physical and emotional change for women. As mothers, we need to feel supported by our loved ones and medical professionals so that we can properly care for ourselves and our families.
Culturally relevant postpartum care is essential because it helps us provide better care for our clients. The cultural needs of new mothers can be different depending on their backgrounds or experiences. For example, some mothers may want to breastfeed but lack support from their family members or partners because of their religious beliefs. Others may have experienced trauma in the past or may struggle with depression or anxiety after giving birth.
In order to provide culturally competent care, we need to understand what makes each person unique and how their culture influences their experience as a parent. When we are able to put ourselves in their shoes, we can better understand what they need from us as doulas, care providers, etc— whether it’s advice on breastfeeding or emotional support after experiencing trauma during childbirth.
Recognizing cultural relevance and incorporating it into prenatal care is not a cure-all, but it is still an important factor in bringing professionals in line with cultural norms within communities. The failure to do so could result in miscommunication and a lack of clarity during care.
The result? Postpartum depression and other concerns may go unnoticed or improperly treated, ultimately leading to larger problems down the road such as postpartum psychosis and even death.
By making culturally relevant screenings and assessments part of prenatal and perinatal care, there’s potential to improve outcomes for both parents and children alike.