Why do parents keep the placenta after giving birth?

I work in a hospital as a housekeeper and today I was working in Labor and Delievery, and I opened a huge fridge in the closet. It was full of bio hazard bags clearly labled with names and "Placenta". I asked a nurse who gets rid of them and she said some parents keep them!!! Why?? Is this normal? or is Portland Oregon just weird?

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    I have a patient who told me she kept her baby's placenta & they planted it with a new tree in the yard.

    I forget the tradtion & the significance of it, but the tree & the placenta obviously represented new life...

    I thought it was a little odd myself, but the woman is not odd in any other way- so as long as it made her & her husband happy & didnt harm anyone- fine with me.

    No, I really don't think people eat them. I think mostly it's the burial ritual.

    I found this online

    The place of placental burial is important in many cultures. Among some peoples, the placenta must remain hidden from evil spirits to safeguard the newborn baby; other burial practices emphasize the lifelong connection between placenta and child. For example, villagers in Zimbabwe believe that burying the placenta in the family home will ensure that their offspring will always return home. (16) Sir James Frazer, writing in the early 20th century, noted that "even in Europe many people still believe that a person's destiny is more or less bound up with that of his navel-string or afterbirth." Frazer reports that German midwives would give the dried navel-string to the father, telling him to preserve it carefully in order to keep the child healthy and free from illness. (17) Modern-day Lotus-birth advocate Jeannine Parvati Baker believes that we all have a strong connection to the place where our "navel string" and placenta are buried. (18)

    The relationship with the placenta does not end with its disposal, whether by ritual burial or by hospital incineration. Placental symbolism is everywhere in our culture, from the handbags that we carry—holding our money, datebooks, and other items of survival—to the soft toys that we cram into our babies' cribs. Some believe that much of our culture's discontent and our urge to accumulate possessions—including all of the aforementioned—come from the traumatic loss of our first possession: our placenta. And each year we honor our placenta by lighting candles on our birthday cake—in Latin, the word placenta means "flat cake." (19)

    Jacob's placenta has been his conduit, passing life from my body to his. Now this placenta—his womb-twin, his primal anchor—has gone back to the earth. Seven years after his birth, Jacob tells me "your placenta is like your heart;' and I realize that he received more than physical nourishment through his placenta. (20) Along with the oxygen, nutrients, hormones, and all the other placental gifts, Jacob also received my love, which was equally his sustenance in my womb, transmitted subtly but vitally by this amazing organ—the placenta.

    See http://www.mothering.com/sections/extras/amazing_p... for the endnotes to this article.

    Sarah J. Buckley is a family physician, a writer, and a full-time mother to Emma (14), Zoe (11), Jacob (9), and Maia Rose (4). Her book Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering will be published in Fall 2005. See www. sarahjbuckley.com for details.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Why do Catholics kiss the Pope's ring and crucifixes?

    Why do Jews wear head coverings?

    DO NOT make fun of people's religious or personal beliefs just because you do not understand them. Many people have varying beliefs as to what should happen to the placenta which is, after all a part of the baby.

    http://www.lasvegassun.com/sunbin/stories/thrive/2...

    The legislation came after several Hawaiian couples found they would not be allowed to take the placenta - known as iewe in Hawaiian - from the hospital to perform a traditional ceremony.

    In Hawaiian belief, the iewe is considered a part of the child. Ceremonies in the islands include burying the iewe under a tree, so that the growth of the tree can be used to better understand psychological and spiritual changes in the child.

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  • 1 decade ago

    It's completely normal! I put my placenta from my 2nd child in the freezer(we had a home birth) and a week or so later, we planted it under some Lily flowers(my daughter is named Lily.) I think it was a very special thing for our family. I personally would never eat placenta, but Ive heard about people that do because it really does have a LOT of nutrients and vitamins. Some women even pay to have their placentas crushed into powder and made into pills, to combat post-partum depression.

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  • 3 years ago

    definite, even right here in u . s . some women individuals dry the placenta out and swap them into pills to take after delivery, it curiously enables with submit pardum melancholy. it is likewise complete of nutrition it is why some woman consume it, to swap the supplements and minerals they lose giving delivery. Placenta trees are actually ordinary, it was a hippie situation yet further and extra woman are commencing as much as the two consume their placenta or plant them.

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  • kiwi
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    In certain parts of the world, the father searches thru the placenta, to be sure that all fingers and toes are gone.

    Some countries believe in planting the placenta in the ground, and planting a tree there, too.

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  • 1 decade ago

    lol. Lots of people keep the placentas as a memory or some people like to eat it. In the old days you did eat it because it has amazing nutrients and vitamins in it. Thats why cats and dogs will eat it. Some people like to keep it and give it to their kids when they are grown up but I think thats a little weird.

    Source(s): Babys run in the family
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  • 1 decade ago

    I've heard of people taking it home and burying it in their garden or keeping it on the mantelpiece or even cooking and eating it. Yuk, I don't care how many nutrients a placenta supposedly has, that's gross! My friend claims she was at a friend's house when they were little and her friend showed her the placenta which her parents had taken home after her birth, they kept it in a bag in the freezer. Eeewww.

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  • 1 decade ago

    My daughter's placenta we kept in a bucket for a few hours after her birth, I wanted to look at it because I was fascinated.

    She was born at home and they said if we wanted to keep it, we could, but we weren't allowed to throw it out with regular rubbish. We joked about feeding it to the dog for his dinner but eventually let them take it when they left.

    A friend of mine buried her son's in her garden and planted a tree for him. It's nice!

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  • 1 decade ago

    this is happening a lot i read a story of one couple who wanted to save it and just bury it under a tree in their yard. it was some kind of superstition thing. also placenta can be used for stem cell research

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I think The blood in the placenta is valuable if the baby becomes sick or something, people also donate it for stem cell research because of the richness of nutrients in it.

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