Q: What is placenta encapsulation, and why would anyone do it?
A: By processing the placenta into capsules (pills), many new mothers find it easier to swallow and also enjoy the ability to consume the placenta over a prolonged period of time. The main reasons that women consume their placentas are to balance postpartum hormones, prevent/reduce baby blues and postpartum depression, increase milk production, fight fatigue, restore iron levels, and speed postpartum recovery.
Q: Why are you qualified to do this work?
A: As Postpartum Placenta Specialists, we have completed comprehensive, professional training through Placenta Prep of ProDoula, which included our in-person encapsulation of a placenta. We maintain up to date certification in Blood Borne Pathogen prevention training and hold ourselves to the highest standards of cleanliness and professionalism. Our work as a Postpartum Placenta Specialists is also informed by birth and postpartum doula trainings and experience with a full spectrum of maternal experiences (cesarean births, postpartum depression, surrogacy, adoption, loss, and more). We know very personally the challenges of recovering from birth and managing lifestyle changes in the postpartum stage, and truly believe that if there is anything to ease this season of life, it is worth it!
Q: How do I know this is safe?
A: Placenta has safely been used as a remedy for many ailments in Traditional Chinese Medicine for hundreds of years as well as for postpartum recovery in cultures globally. To ensure safety for our current clients, ourselves, and our future clients, we diligently practice the highest standards of sanitation to prevent contamination and spread of any communicable diseases. This is our responsibility and privilege, and our reputation depends on it! Below, you may view our most up to date evidence of Bloodborne Pathogens (BBP) and infection prevention training designed specifically for placenta encapsulators in accordance with the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard 29 CFR 1910.1030.
Q: Will the hospital let me keep my placenta?
A: Except under circumstances where the placenta is infected, the hospital will allow you to bring home your placenta. You will first be required to fill out the hospital’s release form.
Q: Why is placenta encapsulation $225+?
A: $225 is a steal, especially when compared to encapsulators who charge similar fees for a service where your own kitchen does not get cleaned! In addition to single-use supplies (capsules, nitrile gloves, aprons, hair nets, cutting boards, countertop protectors, paper towels, and more), we bring many costly pieces of sterilized, proper equipment to your home, and these pieces of equipment must also be periodically replaced. Factor in time, mileage, and other business expenses… you will rarely see a professional in-home encapsulation offered at this affordable price!
Q: Why is there a $50 deposit?
A: When you reserve placenta encapsulation services with your $50 deposit, you are ensuring that we will have all of the necessary equipment and supplies on hand, we will be on call and available to service your placenta within 24-48 hours of your birth, a qualified back up placenta specialist will be available (in the event of an emergency), and we will offer alternatives if we find your placenta unsafe for consumption.
Q: Do I have any responsibilities beyond paying for the services?
A: Yes — transportation and storage. We will provide you with all of the supplies, equipment, and detailed instructions necessary to transport your placenta to your home and safely store it prior to our arrival. Once we arrive at your home, we will also require access to your sink, stove, and an electrical outlet.
Q: Do I have to be present for the encapsulation?
A: It’s entirely up to you! If you are interested in the process, you are welcome to watch it from start to finish. If you don’t want to see your placenta being encapsulated, we completely respect that, too. If you will be back and forth from the hospital, you may wish to leave me a garage code or key so we can process the placenta while you are away.
Q: Why do you do the encapsulation in my home?
A: Because the placenta encapsulation industry is currently unregulated in the United States, having your placenta encapsulated in your home gives you extra transparency about the process and peace of mind that your placenta remains in your possession and environment at all times. Besides that, we get to leave the new parents’ kitchen in a more sparkling and tidy condition than when we arrived!
Q: What areas do you serve?
A: We serve Palm Beach County and northern Broward County. If you live within a 30 minute driving distance of Good Samaritan Medical Center in West Palm Beach or Boca Raton Regional Hospital, the fees listed on our service menu apply to you. If your home is farther than 30 minutes from these hospitals, an additional travel fee will apply.
Q: What method do you use to prepare my placenta for encapsulation?
A: Placenta Palm Beach follows the Traditional Method of preparing the placenta for consumption. Based on Traditional Chinese Medicine, this method includes cleaning and draining the placenta, steaming it in a pot with ginger and lemongrass, slicing and dehydrating the placenta, and grinding it into small particles. At this time, the Raw Method of encapsulation is not being offered by Placenta Palm Beach. If you are interested in consumption of the raw placenta, we encourage you to talk with us about the potential benefits, drawbacks, and alternatives to the Raw Method, and consider placing a small portion of your placenta into a smoothie shortly after birth and prior to your encapsulation by the Traditional Method.
Q: What is the whole timeline for this process?
A: A typical* timeline looks like this:
- 25-35 weeks pregnancy: Set up a consult and reserve your services with a deposit.
- Shortly after birth: Call us to let us know that your placenta is available. Keep placenta on ice or in a refrigerator.
- 24-48 hours postpartum: We come to your home to prepare your placenta (2 hours).
- 1 day later: We return to encapsulate your dehydrated placenta (1.5 hours). It is now ready to consume! We will stay in touch over the following weeks to gauge how the pills are working and make any adjustments accordingly.
*Caveat: If you decide later than 35 weeks that you want your placenta encapsulated, or even decide shortly after the birth, we are happy to process your placenta, but we do not guarantee our immediate availability. Depending on how many other clients’ placentas we are processing at that time, there is a possibility you will have to place your placenta in the freezer before our equipment is available.
Q: What should I ask a placenta encapsulator during a consult or interview?
- What is your training and experience?
- Where do you do the encapsulations?
- What method do you use for encapsulation?
- Are your supplies dedicated to placenta encapsulation, or are they your personal supplies also?
- If you encapsulate at your own home and not mine:
- Do you have a dedicated space for placenta encapsulation?
- Are there pets or children nearby?
- How do you sanitize between personal use and encapsulation use?
- How many placentas have you had in your kitchen at one time?
- Do you follow OSHA standards / health department guidelines?
- If my medical team is unsupportive of me saving my placenta, is there anything you can do to help?
- What attracted you to the work of placenta encapsulation? Why do you do this?
Q: What if people think I am disgusting or crazy?
A: Your choice to encapsulate and consume your placenta is completely confidential; there is no need for the world to know your decisions. We would be happy to talk more about this with you if approval by friends and family is a concern. You can also read some conversation considerations in the Placenta Blog.
Q: Are placenta capsules really vegan?
A: Vegans who have chosen to consume their placentas consider it safe for their lifestyle because no animals were harmed during the process, they are only consuming what was already inside their bodies, and with few exceptions, all other land mammals, including herbivorous ones, consume their placenta. If you are interested in a vegan or vegetarian option, please let us know so we can make sure that we have non-gelatin, vegetable based capsules ready for your encapsulation.
Q: How do I take the capsules?
A: We will provide you with general guidelines for consumption when we have finished making your encapsulation, and we will follow up with you after a few days to see if an adjustment is a good idea. We are available to discuss any questions or concerns you have while taking your placenta capsules.
Q: I’m really craving placenta capsules. How and when do I sign up to have my placenta encapsulated?
A: You may schedule your initial, risk-free consultation at any time during your pregnancy by one of these three methods:
- Email us at PlacentaPB@gmail.com
- Call 561-827-3263 (for northern or central Palm Beach County)
- Call 561-513-8686 (for southern Palm Beach County or northern Broward County)
Q: I have a question that is not answered here. How may I learn more?
A: Call or email us. Doula & Postpartum Placenta Specialist Cher (in Boca Raton) may be reached at 561 – 513 – 8686. Doula & Postpartum Placenta Specialist Christine (in West Palm Beach) may be reached at 561 – 827 – 3263