Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

  • Hebrew
  • English
  • Espnaol
  • Francais
Menu

Safety of postpartum bedikot

13 February, 2016

Question:

Is it safe to do bedikot 2 or 3 weeks postpartum? If you are not supposed to use tampons until after the doctor says it's okay, why would nonsterile bedikah cloths be okay?
I don't want to wait until after my postpartum visit to start the process if I don't have to, but I also don't want to risk introducing an infection, chas v'shalom, by starting before it would be medically advised (even without being intimate until the doctor says it's ok).


Answer:

There is much debate about how long after childbirth there is really a risk for infection. The first two weeks seem to be the time of highest risk, as this is the time it takes for the cervix to close.  Therefore, at this stage, it would seem reasonable to do the minimum number of bedikot (hefsek taharah, one bedikah on day one, and one bedikah on day seven) with a clean bedikah cloth, taking care to go into the cracks and crevices but not trying to go as deep as you possibly can. However, any questions in this regard are best addressed to your physician.  In general, for the first cycle postpartum, one may also omit the moch dachuk.

Please note that postpartum bleeding tends to come and go in waves and typically continues for a month or two, so it is unusual to be able to count the full clean days at two to three weeks.


This internet service does not preclude, override or replace the psak of any rabbinical authority. It is the responsibility of the questioner to inform us of any previous consultation or ruling. As even slight variation in circumstances may have Halachic consequences, views expressed concerning one case may not be applied to other, seemingly similar cases. All health and health-related information contained within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is intended to be general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for consulting with your health care professional. The advice is intended to offer a basis for individuals to discuss their medical condition with their health care provider but not individual advice. Although every effort is made to ensure that the material within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is accurate and timely, it is provided for the convenience of the Web site user but should not be considered official. Advice for actual medical practice should be obtained from a licensed health care professional.

For further questions or comments: 

The Nishmat Women's Health and Halacha Site is a public service of Nishmat, The Jeanie Schottenstein Center for Advanced Torah Study for Women. This project and others like it are made possible by contributions from people like you. If you have benefited from the service, and wish to enable us to help others, click here to donate.


Users of Internet filtering services: This site discusses sensitive subjects that some services filter without visual indication. A page that appears 100% complete might actually be missing critical Jewish-law or medical information. To ensure that you view the pages accurately, ask the filtering service to whitelist all pages under yoatzot.org.