Taking A Sitz Bath
Taking A Sitz Bath

I first heard of sitz bath after giving birth to my 4th baby, Elisha. She was pretty big (at 3.2 kilos and 52cm – that’s big enough for me considering my 3 other babies all weighed 2.2 kilos only) and my ob had to sew me up. The nurse would come a few 2-3 times a day to give me a sitz bath – dipping me in a tub waist down. The nurse told me that sitz bath would relieve the pain from the stitches.

The German word sitz means sitzen which literally means to sit. The term used is very appropriate since a patient would only need to sit down during the whole process. Some people use baking soda or salt for hemorrhoid treatment and anal fistulae; women suffering from menstrual cramps or had a recent episiotomy also takes this kind of bath. Taking the sitz bath is suggested to men with prostate glands inflammation.

A sitz bathtub is a plastic or ceramic tub that can be placed over the toilet and filled with water. the patient sits on the tub for about 15 – 20 minutes per session to relieve the discomfort and pain. One can take a sitz bath in a regular bathtub, but the patient’s feet needs to be kept over the side of the tub or put in the water, while the knees are kept bent. A constant flow of warm water is needed when taking a sitz bath thus it may not be as hygienic as taking it on a sitz bathtub. When sitting on a warm water, blood reached the impacted area allowing healing and relief for pain and discomfort. The sitz bath uses the premise of hydro or water therapy. Like what they say, “water is life”.

Drugstore chains sell the sitz bath tub . Sitz bathtub may also be sold at hospital pharmacies or medical supply stores. Should you need a sitz bath after surgical procedure or giving birth, ask your physician or your nurse if they can provide you with one before you go home.

Here are some helpful tips for taking a sitz bath at home:

1.    Of course, you need to prepare the items you will need so they are near at hand from where you will be using the sitz bath. Have the salt or baking soda (or even vinegar for vaginal infection) ready beside your sitz bathtub. Have someone help you when you take the sitz bath at home. If you’re too embarrassed to ask for help, have everything you need by your side before taking the sitz bath.

2.    Fill the sitz bathtub with clean warm water. Remember that the water will feel cooler on your hands than it will with the rest of your body. Use your elbow to check water temp.

3.    The sitz bath package usually comes with a bag for filling the water then hang it above you with a hook similar with the one used for IV poles. It should be higher than the toilet. The tube will run from the bag into the sitz bathtub and provide a continuous flow of water. The clamp provided is used to stop the flow of water.

4.    There are sitz bathtubs designed with a vent to prevent water from overflowing. If you’re using a regular tub, make sure you don’t overfill it.

5.    Make sure you path dry the affected area with a clean cloth after taking the sitz bath.

6.    Taking the sitz bath several times a day to easy soreness is usually recommended by the doctor.

7.    Always wash your sitz bathtub after using it. It will be unsanitary to leave it with the water and then use it again. Keep it in a dry clean bag and wash it again before using it. You are using the sitz bathtub to treat a sensitive part of your body so you better keep it clean.

Now you’re ready to take your home first ever home sitz bath! All you need to do is follow these simple steps and you’re one you’re way to relieving yourself from the pain and discomfort that hemorrhoids or even menstrual cramps bring!