There are a lot of questions covered here in our FAQ’s, and they are categorized for your convenience. Please know that we will be engaging in a pre-service consultation via phone or Skype, going over all details and the specifics for your personalized service. This will take place after you have secured your spot on our calendar, and 2-4 weeks prior to your delivery.
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What is your experience level?
Brenda Ojala, Placenta Works founder, Alchemist, Certified Placenta Encapsulation & Alchemy Specialist, and mentor for the Placenta Works trained and certified team, has been serving moms with PE education and personal, reliable, safe and professional services for close to 8 years. Brenda, along with the Placenta Works team, have transformed hundreds of placentas; keeping moms connected to baby while experiencing an optimal postpartum period.
Do you process the placenta in your home or mine?
We strongly feel it would be most beneficial to offer this very personal service, of your placenta’s transformation, in an environment that is very intimate, and maintained by you. The energy behind working with your very sacred ‘Tree of Life’ should be contained, and shared, within your own private intimate space – the same dwelling your new babe will be living and thriving in. We do not advocate at all for this service to be provided in our own kitchen or homes, and there are many vital reasons for this. If for some reason you feel having it done in your home will not be an option for you, we do offer other possible options. Please inquire.
What areas do you service?
We serve the coast of North Carolina and South Carolina with our placenta encapsulation package. Our primary areas of service are Wilmington, Jacksonville, and Greenville, NC (including Brunswick County) and also Myrtle Beach, SC and all surrounding areas to these locations. We will travel farther upon request and for the appropriate additional mileage fee.
What is my investment for this service?
The fee for this complete personal and professional placenta encapsulation service is $275. This fee includes your encapsulation service, travel of 2 visits to your home, on call service for before and after your due date, education, support and any needed follow-up. As a free bonus, we offer moms the option of adding any or all of our additional services as follows: prints, tincture, smoothie, salve, mother’s broth, and cord keepsake. (Pictures of your placenta available upon request) Also, although rare, mileage is added if you are located more than 35 miles from one of our certified specialists. We do offer gift certificates and this service can always be added to any baby gift registry or as a shower gift from friends and/or family.
Do you have any travel fees?
Our CPES’s are strategically placed geographically, and we will place you with the one that is the closest to you. If you happen to be over 30 miles from the certified specialist, we will need to add an additional fee for mileage @ .55 cents a mile. For example, if you are 45 miles from the nearest specialist, it would be an additional $16.50 for mileage. 60 miles away would be an additional $33.
Why would I pay a professional to do this for me?
With the proper research and supplies you can encapsulate your own placenta; however, most moms prefer to hire an experienced Certified Placenta Alchemy Specialist to handle the process for them. It can be a long, messy, difficult process, one that most moms would rather avoid after just given birth. Hiring a CPAS allows you to spend your time bonding with your baby, resting, and establishing breastfeeding, etc.. You can be sure that your CPAS is equipped and expertly trained in preparing placenta medicine, insuring that your placenta is processed in a way that preserves the vital hormones and nutrients. Through food handling safety, universal precautions, and blood borne pathogen training, you can be assured that your CPAS will properly handle and care for your placenta prior to consumption. For more info click here.
Do you recommend the raw process over the TCM process?
Because raw has a cooling effect on the body, (which is only at its most benefit the first 24-72 hours after birth, and why we offer a placenta smoothie) and the body needs the warming effect past this point, we believe the TCM method is a better choice. Also, raw tends to boost higher levels of energy, which is needed immediate PP to pull mom back out from the exhaustion of labor (smoothie) however resting and bonding with baby is vital part of the postpartum period.
Does the placenta ‘hold toxins’?
No it does not. What baby needs from mom, goes through placenta to baby. What baby does not need gets back out to mom through the placenta, and eliminated through her system. The placenta is a transporter of ‘toxins’, not a ‘holder’. (Please see next question)
Can I encapsulate if I am a smoker?
The heavy metals from smoking have been found through research to be retained in the placenta. It is best if smoking was ceased at least 3 months prior to the birth, however ultimately it is the mother’s choice once the risks are explained.
Wouldn’t this be considered cannibalism?
No! Cannibalism is eating the killed flesh of another human. This is an organ, like liver, (not flesh) that brings LIFE and comes from your own body.
Does the bible say anything about consuming your placenta?
In the beginning we are given the wisdom that eating from the ‘Tree of Life’ brings life. Due to the placentas’ perfect resemblance to a tree, it was given the nickname ‘The Tree of Life’. Not only does it bring life to the baby, when consumed its benefits bring life back into mom after the birth of her babe.
When should I contact you to begin the encapsulation process?
I ask that I be put on the ‘labor call list’ and someone just sends me a simple text letting me know labor has begun. Then we can make proper preparations to get started. I would need another text after baby has arrived so we can make arrangements for our arrival time.
How do I insure a spot on your calendar?
Start by filling out our contact form here. We will also require a $50 deposit and a signed liability release.
How do I safely transfer my Placenta home from the hospital?
You will need 2x a one gallon zip lock bag (they will be doubled up) and a small cooler. The placenta will go into the doubled up bags and into the cooler with ice. Be sure it is on ice within 4 hours of the birth. For more info, Please see ‘Hospital Release’ to be properly prepared, and once you are secure on our calendar, we will provide you with a hospital liability release between you and the hospital.
Under what circumstances would my placenta be non-consumable?
We would not be able to encapsulate your placenta if you develop a uterine infection during labor (generally indicated by a fever in labor), if your placenta has been taken to pathology, if it was not put in cooler and/or on ice within 4 hours, and if the placenta was treated for any reason with a high amount of betadine.
Can I still encapsulate if I have meds during labor, or a c-section?
Yes you can. Pitocin, Epidural, etc and/or a c-section, are not contraindications for encapsulation
If I choose cord blood banking, can I still encapsulate?
Yes you can, be sure all parties involved in both processes know your intentions to have both services done, to insure both processes are adhered to correctly.
Is Group B Strep (GBS) a contraindication?
Not unless your care provider determines that the infection reached the placental tissue, otherwise we are safe to encapsulate. If GBS is present in the vagina at the time of birth, any bacteria will be killed during the steaming process through the TCM method of preparation.
Can I encapsulate if there is meconium present?
Yes, we would give the placenta an extra good rinse or a vinegar bath if need be. With high levels of meconium and staining, we can remove all the membranes.
How do I avoid my whole placenta being taken to pathology?
If your care provider determines that your placenta needs to be examined, they can request it be done in the room. If that is not an option, we suggest they take just a small piece to be tested so that your whole placenta is not wasted. If they have to take the whole thing for whatever reason, I would ask to at least keep a piece behind to be able to make a tincture if they find nothing wrong. It is a very rare chance that the whole placenta is taken to pathology, however if it does, we will be unable to encapsulate. If this rare occasion happens and you get into a situation where you need support, we would then provide you with other options for your postpartum period.
Can I encapsulate if I give birth prematurely?
Yes, we have encapsulated for premature babies, however we need to confirm with your care provider that the cause did not affect the integrity of the placenta.
Is it safe to encapsulate my placenta after a lotus birth?
Although we have never encapsulated with a lotus birth, I have referred interested moms to an informative blog post by midwife Gloria Lemay here.
How soon do you come to my home?
We do need to get there to get start the process within 12-48 hours from the birth. If for some reason someone cannot be there for us to come in, within that time frame, it would be best that the double bagged placenta is placed in the freezer until we can arrange the soonest convenient time for you. It would then need to be removed from the freezer and placed in the refrigerator 12-24 hours prior to our arranged start time.
How long does the process take?
The process takes approximately 12-15 hours total. This will require 2 visits to your home. The first visit will take approximately 2 hours, depending on all the services you choose. The second visit will take approximately an hour. Your placenta will be dehydrating in-between the two visits.
Do I need any supplies or do you provide them?
We will provide all the supplies, which we clean and disinfect before and after every use. We only use stainless steel, food grade plastic and disposable supplies. We will just need most of the area around your kitchen sink, and will sanitize before and after the process.
Is there an unpleasant smell during the process?
We have not had any complaints of an unpleasant smell. Some have shared that it smells like we are cooking a nice organ meat like liver. We are sure to have the ventilation on over the stove, and any possibly ‘meaty’ smell would be contained in the kitchen.
If my placenta was frozen months ago, can I still use?
Yes, you can still encapsulate your placenta. Although fresh is best to insure the best value, if it had to be frozen, it needs to be processed within 3-6 months of being in your freezer and 12 months in a deep freezer, as long as no freezer burn is present. This is provided as long as the placenta was frozen by the 48th hour and chilled within 4 hours of the birth. We have seen moms receive benefits even when the placenta was frozen for over 1-2 years. This would be a case by case depending on all circumstances.
How many pills will my placenta yield?
All placentas are unique and vary in size. The placenta is generally 1/6th of the weight of the baby. I always say that mom and baby will grow the exact size that both mom and baby need. Typically our clients have received anywhere from 75-200 capsules. We have had some yield over 200, and receiving fewer than 100, is not common.
What types of capsules do you use?
We only use vegetarian capsules, which do not contain animal gelatin, and they are size ‘00’.
What if I have difficulty with swallowing or taking pills?
If you are one that has difficulty swallowing pills, we can keep just the placenta powder in the air tight container and you can add to smoothies, foods, and/or drinks, to achieve the same benefits.
What if I get headaches while taking the capsules?
Headaches are an indication of low hydration. With breastfeeding and the increase in milk production it is recommended to first start an increase of your water intake, if this does not help, lower your dose to 1 capsule, if that does not help, lower the number of doses a day.
Can I share my capsules with others?
Due to the hormones in the placenta being bio-specific to you and babe, we do not recommend you sharing the capsules; however what you do with your capsules, is at your discretion. Moms have shared them with their mothers, sisters, and their partners. We will only do the service for the mother, what she chooses after the service is up to her.
Is there a smell or taste to the capsules?
Some moms have reported an earthy smell or meaty taste. This is usually noticed after the primal urge has worn off. If this occurs, or you have unpleasant burps, store your capsules in the air tight container, in the freezer. Do not take with carbonated beverages.
What are the dosage recommendations?
We typically start moms off with a higher dosage regimen and then gradually wean her off as her body begins to start reproducing hormones. Because every birth experience is different, and may change your regimen, we will go over dosage instructions specific for you with the post service information. We will also leave you with a dosage card to follow.
Is there ever a time that it is not recommended that my capsules be taken?
Yes, stop taking your capsules if you develop any infection (usually indicated by a fever) ex. mastitis, common cold, flu etc
What is the best way to store my capsules?
Store the air tight container in a cool dry place. We have found the refrigerator to be the best for your immediate postpartum period, and the freezer for long term storage.
Do you add anything to my capsules?
No we do not. The placenta is potent enough on its own. If anything was to be added into the capsules, and you had a reaction to it, all your capsules would be useless to you.
Can I continue using my capsules during another pregnancy?
No, due to some of the hormones acting to reduce the uterine size by contracting the walls, it is not recommended at all, and should be avoided for optimal safety and precaution.
Is there any taste of the placenta in the smoothie?
Absolutely not! We have had this tested out. Moms rave about our smoothies and we will go over the details of our ingredients during your pre-service consultation.
What can I use the salve for?
Moms have loved our placenta salve, and it can be used for any skin issues for mom and/or baby. Sore nipples, diaper rash, eczema, cradle cap, baby acne, etc.
Why is the tincture an important part of the process?
The tincture is a great additional remedy; your own personal ‘rescue remedy’ and is ready about the time that your capsule regimen may be completed. (6-8 weeks) If stored properly, the tincture lasts indefinitely and can be used by both mother and baby. We go over this in more detail during your pre-service consultation.