Monday, January 5, 2009

Taboos during confinement for Chinese women

After a Chinese woman has given birth, she is subjected to tatoos as passed down from generation to generation. For example, she has to rest for about a month in order for the body to recover. Besides she has to drink certain Chinese herb soup boiled from danggui, taoren, quangong,baoqiang, dan licorice to help in the shrinking of the womb and to clear away the discharge.

The worst thing is she is not allowed to wash her hair, bathe and touch cold water because it is believed that her resistence to diseases at this time is very poor and doing the above things will make her vulnerable to diseases and make her recovery very slow. Furthermore, she is not allowed to drink unboiled water but drinking water boiled with duzhong is encouraged.

As if that is not enough she is not allowed to be under the fan and not to be in the open air. This is because she will sweat easily. Hence exposure to flowing air and cold will cause her to suffer from cold or influenza.

Nowadays new mothers will ignore all the above taboos and carry on life as usual. In the end, they will find that they will have rheumatism here and there when they grow old. Hence, there must be some good in the traditional practice as mentioned above.

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