If you've ever given birth or experienced period pain, you’ve likely used an ice or heat pack to help take the edge off of your discomfort. At Nyssa, we believe in the healing power of ice and heat when applied properly and regularly— not to mention the comfort. That's why we created our FourthWear Postpartum Recovery Underwear, VieWear Period Comfort Underwear and their accompany range of specially contoured ice/heat packs.
Let's take it back to the beginning. After giving birth, some of our team experienced tearing and swelling of the perineal region, with bouts of painful hemorrhoids to boot.
Some of us had to tend to painful c-section incisions. And we all experienced the discomfort of engorgement while pumping and breastfeeding, followed by the all-too-familiar abdominal pangs and pains when our periods kicked back in.
At the time, the only ice packs readily available to us were standard-issue rectangular blocks. The kind you might use for a sports injury, a migraine, or in a beer cooler. In terms of heat, we were working with our mom's electric heating pad from the 1980s. There was literally no getting around with either of those therapies— so bound to our beds and couches we were.
We wanted to give women and people with vulvas the products we wish we had in our Fourth Trimester as we tended to our pain and discomfort– and also cared for our new baby, returned to work, prepared meals, did laundry, walked our dogs, and generally got on with living!
So, with the expertise of a leading cryotherapist and our advisory panel of OB-GYNs, doulas, and midwives, we began designing ice/heat packs contoured to women's bodies and needs— and the luxuriously comfortable undergarments to hold them in place.
Ice, Ice Baby:
Ice therapy, traditionally known as cryotherapy, is an easy, inexpensive, and effective approach for pain relief. Applying ice can help ease pain by reducing tissue temperature, which provides an acute local analgesic effect. It is through this reduction in temperature that cold application results in vasoconstriction and reduced blood circulation which can, in turn, reduce swelling and limit hemorrhage formation. For these reasons ice can be an extremely useful tool for postpartum recovery below-the-belt, breast tenderness from pumping or feeding, and to accelerate relief from period pain.
Ice packs are also a simple and useful tool for decreasing postoperative pain in patients undergoing major abdominal operations like c-sections. Recently, patients undergoing abdominal surgery who were treated with ice packs over the first 24 hours after surgery experienced reduced postoperative pain at their incision, as well as reduced narcotic use. Always consult your doctor to find out the ice therapy protocol that's best for you.
And, Some Like It Hot:
Afterbirth pains are similar to menstrual cramps, and occur the first few days following your baby's birth as your uterus contracts back to its original shape. They are normal, and may be stronger with each baby you have. Strangely, they most commonly occur while breastfeeding so you might be hit with a double-whammy of breast pain and abdominal pain in those first few weeks after birth. Warm heat packs can help with the pain in both areas.
Heat works by softening breast or abdominal tissue and relaxing muscle tension which improves blood circulation, eliminates fluid retention, diminishes swelling, and thereby reduces pain caused by nerve compression. It is often recommended by lactation specialists to prevent or ease engorgement (breasts swollen with milk). And, many OB-GYNs recommend local heat to prevent or alleviate primary dysmenorrhea (aka period cramps) and pelvic pains associated with endometriosis.
Our Between Legs Ice/Heat Pack is designed for those first few weeks after child birth when you are swollen and sometimes healing from tearing or stitches in the perineal region or at the site of caesarean incision. A standard-issue ice/heat pack is not going to comfortably fit between your thighs and butt cheeks— trust us, we tried it— but a tapered one would!
Our Uterine Ice/Heat Pack is for the discomfort that often comes later in your Fourth Trimester as your uterus contracts and your body gears-up for the return of menstruation.
And, finally, our Breast & Chest Ice/Heat Packs designed to mold to the shape of any size breast for complete relief from the skin irritation and soreness associated with engorgement, breastfeeding, pumping, or lactation suppression.
Mia, Ellen, Eden & Aubrey (Nyssa Co-Founders) x
Supersoft, belly hugging underwear with our patented pocket design to securely hold ice or heat therapy between the legs and over the lower abdomen where postpartum recovering bodies need it most.