You made it through your roughly 40 weeks of pregnancy, you’ve delivered a healthy baby, and now you’re officially a new mother! It is time to celebrate the newest member of your family, but it’s also time to transition smoothly from pregnancy to postpartum, bringing into focus a whole new variety of symptoms and questions.
No matter the method of birth, the first six weeks postpartum should be considered your recovery period. Even if you’ve had the easiest pregnancy and smoothest delivery on record, you have just put your body through a marathon, and it needs the appropriate time to recuperate and regroup.
Just like every mom and pregnancy is different, every recovery is different. Most of the effects will ease up within a week or so, while others could linger for a couple of weeks. If you delivered vaginally, you can expect the soreness to go away for your perineum to heal anywhere from three to six weeks.
If you had a C-section, you can expect to spend three to four days in the hospital and to start feeling normal after four to six weeks.
Things to Pay Attention to Postpartum
While every woman is different, there are certain things every woman should pay attention to postpartum. For example, most women will have postpartum bleeding that can last from 10 days up to six weeks depending on how difficult your delivery was and other risk factors.
If you notice large blood clots or if you are bleeding heavily for more than an hour, you’ll want to call our office right away so that we can rule out postpartum hemorrhage. Tampons are off-limits during this time, so make sure you stock up on pads before you go in for delivery.
There are several things you can do to help speed up the postpartum healing process:
- Perineum healing help. It’s a good idea to ice your perineum every few hours during the first 24 hours post-birth.
- C-Section Care. Clean your incision with soap and water once a day, use a clean towel to dry, and apply your antibiotic ointment.
- Take care of the aches and pains. You can ease the aches from pushing by taking acetaminophen, having a hot shower, using a heating pad, or best of all, get a massage!
- Be nice to your breasts. If your breasts ache, a warm compress or ice packs can help. If you breastfeed, you can use lanolin cream to prevent cracked nipples.
- Visit your doctor. You must check in with your doctor to make sure that everything is healing how it should.
Things to Know About Postpartum Depression
Having a baby is certainly a life-changing experience. Most new moms face a round of the baby blues because of the hormone roller coaster they’ve been on, the lack of sleep from caring for your baby, and the struggle of welcoming your newest family member home.
If you feel persistently hopeless, isolated, sad, worthless, irritable, or anxious for more than two weeks postpartum you should call us right away and schedule an appointment so that we can talk with you and better understand your feelings.
It is important to remember that postpartum depression is not your fault, and it affects many women. You must talk to a professional so that you can take better care of yourself take care of your baby.
Welcoming Your New Family Member is Exciting!
It’s important to know upfront that the postpartum period is life-changing, exciting, and overwhelming. We’ll talk you through all you need to know so that you can take the best care of yourself while at the same time taking care of your baby.
Our goal is to help you through the whole process and recovery fully as quickly as possible, all while enjoying this special time with your new baby.
Contact us to schedule a time when you can talk through your postpartum concerns with your doctor.