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After delivery, the baby has to be cared for which can be challenging for first-time parents. Omugwo is a traditional Igbo custom for postpartum care by one of the mothers of the couple. The importance of this practice is that it helps the new mother to ease into her new role. During omugwo, it’s the responsibility of the baby's grandmother to help the new mom through her daily needs to eat as it helps with milk production for the baby’s consumption, Swedish massage techniques, and hot water therapy for upwards of three to five months from the date of the birth of the child. Mothers begin to plan for their daughters' omugwo weeks before the arrival of the baby. The woman who attend the omugwo visits her daughter with the necessary delicacies which the nursing mother requires to return her body to normal after delivery.
During the omugwo period, the nursing mother does not do anything apart from eating, breastfeeding her baby, bathing, relaxing, sleeping, and receiving visitors. The child’s grandmother, who comes for the omugwo, does most of the cooking and other household chores. After-birth care is necessary so that the new mother can rest well, regain her strength, and properly prepare for motherhood.
About Dr. Temi:
Dr. Temi Aregbesola-Okere, founder and creator of The Omugwo Box, is a proud Nigerian-American. She was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York by two immigrant parents who rooted her deeply in Nigerian culture. After the birth of her second son, she was seeking a set of products to help her with postpartum self-care. Frustrated with the lack of attention to Black and Brown women of African descent, she took it upon herself to create The Omugwo Box. With her background in public health, she is fully aware of the disparities in healthcare that exist for minority women, and hopes to close the postpartum care gap by catering to Black and Brown women all over the world.
The Omugwo Box
Connect with Dr. Temi:
The hashtag for the podcast is #nourishyourflourish. You can also find our practice on the following social media outlets:
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