Low-Risk Pain Management Options
Talk to your doctor about ways to manage or relieve your postpartum pain. Here are a few options they might recommend:
- Ibuprofen (Motrin®) & acetaminophen (Tylenol®)
- Light activity (walking)
- Numbing sprays such as Dermoplast®
- Witch-hazel pads such as Tucks®
- Sitz baths (sitting in a few inches of warm water)
- Cold pack/heating pad
Do I need Opioids?
Opioids are commonly prescribed for postpartum pain, however they have side effects and risks. Your doctor can help you decide if opioids are right for you.
Possible Side Effects:
- Opioids passing to baby through breastmilk
- Nausea and vomiting
Common opioids include Oxycodone (Percocet®, OxyContin®) and Hydrocodone (Norco®, Vicodin®). If you are taking opioids, talk to your doctor or pharmacist about safe ways to manage side effects and reduce risks.
If you are prescribed opioids, you can dispose of any unused medication at your local medication drop box or safe household disposal method. Click here for more information on medication disposal methods.
- Maternal Mental Health
- FDA – Breastfeeding and Opioids
- Baby Your Baby – Postpartum Care
- More About Pain Management
- MotherToBaby Utah – Free service where mothers can contact a specialist to get information about medications/other substances effects and risks during pregnancy or breastfeeding.
- March of Dimes Breastfeeding – Keeping Breast Milk Safe and Healthy
- Paul A. Moore, Kathleen M. Ziegler, Ruth D. Lipman, Anita Aminoshariae, Alonso Carrasco-Labra, Angelo Mariotti. Benefits and harms associated with analgesic medications used in the management of acute dental pain. The Journal of the American Dental Association, 2018; 149 (4): 256 DOI: 10.1016/j.adaj.2018.02.012
- Hendrickson RG, McKeown NJ. Is maternal opioid use hazardous to breast-fed infants?. Clin Toxicol (Phila) 2012;50:1–14