When we are preparing for our babies to come into this world we become so consumed with making sure we have everything we need for them that we completely forget what we need for ourselves.
There’s quite a list that we need to tackle to make sure we have everything ready for after we give birth to these tiny humans.
WHAT YOU NEED FOR AFTER YOU GIVE BIRTH
1. Underwear- I tell you this because your underwear will most likely get blood on it and you probably don’t want to ruin the kind you already have, so just buy some cheap underwear you can throw away afterwards. If you can get a couple of the mesh undies the hospital gives you, those are amazing, but if you can’t any regular underwear will do. You also might want to take into consideration buying some that go up pretty-high to get better coverage and if you do end up needing a c-section for any reason it won’t rub on your incision sight like it would if you were to buy the low-cut style.
2. Nursing bras- These are must haves. They really help make nursing so much more convenient. Remember that when your milk comes in you will most likely be a cup size bigger, so buy bigger. You will want some comfortable ones to sleep in as well.
3. Nursing Garments- If you are a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints I highly recommend getting nursing garments. They are life savers and make everything more convenient.
4. Heavy Maxi Pads- The Overnight Maxi Pads work really-well because they go up further in the back and you have better coverage. You’ll be bleeding quite heavily for the first week after giving birth.
5. Thinner Pads and Pantie Liners- You absolutely cannot wear tampons after giving birth even if you have your baby by c-section, so you will need lighter pads and pantie liners for when your bleeding decreases. There is a good chance you’ll be bleeding for weeks.
6. Nursing Pads- As your colostrum and milk come in after you give birth you’ll need nursing pads to stop from leaking onto your clothes. The nursing pads I have found to be the most absorbent, less annoying, and most comfortable are the Lansinoh Nursing Pads, they are a bit more pricey, but worth every penny.
7. Nipple Cream- As you start nursing or pumping, or both your nipples will get tender and sore, apply nipple cream after every feeding or pumping session to help keep them hydrated and to prevent cracking.
8. Double Breast Pump- I say double because this will save you so much time than using a single breast pump. I highly advise buying a nice, good breast pump, they make the world of difference. Medela brand is amazing. Make sure you have the right size flanges as well. If your flanges are too small it will destroy your nipple and milk supply. If they are too big then you will not be getting the correct stimulation for your milk. The flange should suck in your nipple and pretty much your entire areola (the circle around your nipple.) Even if you plan on exclusively nursing, having a breast pump on hand is important for multiple reasons. It can help bring your milk in faster, it can help increase your milk supply, it can help with clogged milk ducts, it can help with engorgement, the list can go on and on. Having one can relieve a lot of stress, especially if nursing isn’t quite happening at the start. Look into seeing if your insurance will cover one for you, a lot do.
9. Hemorrhoid Cream and Tucks Pads- You may not get hemorrhoids after giving birth, so these may be things you can hold off on buying until after you get home. You’ll be grateful for them though if you do need them. The hospital may be able to supply them for you too.
10. Tylenol and Ibuprofen- Make sure your medicine cabinet is all ready to go to help manage your pain. You will most likely be prescribed a pain medication, but when your pain starts to lessen, and you don’t feel you need pain medication for it, but you’re still uncomfortable than Tylenol and Ibuprofen should help manage that.
11. Ice Packs– Make sure you have some ice packs on hand. You can make manipulative ice packs by mixing ¼ cup rubbing alcohol and ¾ cups water into a quart size freezer bag and then freeze. The rubbing alcohol makes the water not freeze completely, so it’s not so hard and easily manipulated.
12. Stool Softeners– Your doctor will most likely prescribe these for you, but if not, you’ll definitely want some of these. You may want to keep some MiraLAX on hand as well. That first bowel movement after giving birth can be quite brutal.
13. Peri Bottle– You will most likely get this from the hospital, but if not, you’ll wish you had one. This helps so much with cleaning yourself up “down there” without hurting yourself.
14. Breastmilk Freezer Bags- Once your milk comes in you will have a lot more milk than your baby will eat, so you will want to freeze the extra to start a good milk supply. Make sure you lay them flat to freeze, so they will thaw quicker and be easier to store.
15. Healthy, Easy Snacks-You’ll realize very quickly that the hardest thing to do after having a baby is finding time to eat. Drinking isn’t a problem, because for some reason you are beyond thirsty after you give birth. Eating though, is a lot harder to accomplish. Make sure before you come home from the hospital that you have easy, ready to grab food like granola bars, apples, bananas, nuts, protein bars, trail mix, grapes, carrots, etc. Put them out on your table where you can see them to help remind you to eat.
Well, I think that’s everything. Some of these things you may not need, so you might want to wait and if you do end up needing them you can just send your husband to the store to buy them after you get home from the hospital.
You may want to make sure you take some of these things to the hospital with you as well. Nursing pads, and a nursing bra are a must. Everything else the hospital should provide for you. The hospital does have nursing pads there, but they are not absorbent at all and are like cardboard.
I hope this is helpful. If you have anything else you’d like to add I’d love to hear it.
C-sections are a fairly-common way to deliver your baby; some people actually request them.
No matter how much you think you know about them, nothing can prepare you for major surgery, because your body is unpredictable, and your body isn’t the same as someone else’s.
Everyone heals differently, everyone’s pain tolerance is different, and not every experience is the same. Some people suffer from post-op complications or complications during surgery. No two stories are alike.
Even if you have had a c-section before and know exactly what to expect going into it, your experience may differ from the other.
When I had my c-section, I thought I was pretty-prepared for it. I read up on all things c-sections, asked my doctor multiple questions, I talked to a lot of my friends who have had them; and they gave me some good tips. After my c-section though I couldn’t believe how many things I experienced that no one told me about. I wish I would have known so much more going into it.
8 THINGS NO ONE TELLS YOU WHILE GETTING YOUR C-SECTION
1. You will lay on a narrow bed in the operating room. It’s so narrow that it seems like you won’t even fit on it and will fall off. Both of your arms will be stretched out to your sides resting on arm holders attached to the bed.
2. It’s freezing in the operating room, so inform them if you are cold and they will cover you with a warm blanket.
3. Your anesthesiologist will be right by the side of your head the entire time. He’ll be constantly pumping you full of things. Communicate with him what symptoms you are experiencing so he can help make you as comfortable as possible. Certain things he is giving you may sting your arm pretty-badly where your IV is at.
4. Although you are completely numb from your belly down you will definitely feel pressure and tugging on your abdomen. It isn’t painful, but it’s uncomfortable and a weird feeling.
5. You may become extremely nauseous during the surgery and may even throw up. Throwing up laying down with your head turned to the side is the worst sensation. I don’t know if it was the medication along with all the other stuff my body was being pumped full of, but the taste of my throw-up was metallic and it felt like I was throwing up small, metal balls. It was terrible! **Warning to your birthing partner. You will be the one suctioning out the throw up from your partners mouth.** Oh, my poor husband! I felt so bad for him. It was disgusting. I threw up 3 or 4 times during surgery too.
6. There will be a ton of hospital staff in the operating room with you. You will be completely exposed. It’s really strange being awake while you’re being operated on. It’s weird to see everyone working and listening to them talking while you just lay there open on the table. Your surgeons will be talking over you like you’re not even there. You know, like in all the medical shows how they talk about everyday life while operating. Yep! That’s what they do! My doctor was talking about a vacation she’s been on recently and one that was coming up she was looking forward to.
7. You may feel tired and loopy. I remember laying there and I just wanted to go to sleep. I was so tired and nauseated. It felt like my body and mind wasn’t completely present. It was a weird feeling.
8. Once you’re done, your doctor will most likely tell you, “Everything went great! Congratulations!” They’ll leave the room and you won’t see them again until the next day when they do rounds. I don’t know why, but this shocked me. It was like once my babies were out that was that! HAHA! I mean obviously I didn’t expect her to hang around, but it was weird to me.
15 THINGS NO ONE TELLS YOU AFTER HAVING A C-SECTION
1. You will be numb for awhile afterwards. You’ll probably be tired, loopy, nauseous, and just won’t be feeling great. I felt all these things. I was pretty-nauseous and threw up a couple more times afterwards. I felt lousy the following days also, I experienced nausea, vomiting, and horrible diarrhea, which was a nightmare trying to get to the bathroom in time with all the pain from my incision. I had no appetite, but I was starving. I was so tired. Sleeping in the hospital is practically impossible and with how much pain I was in sleeping wasn’t happening regardless. My babies were in NICU after my c-section, so I didn’t have that responsibility at the time, but I did have to pump every 3 hours.
2. You may experience “the shakes.” This is caused because of your epidural. You will involuntarily shake (can be a light shiver to severe shaking) for a while afterwards until your anesthesia wears off. Keeping yourself warm can help with this.
3. You may experience severe itchiness throughout your body right after surgery until your anesthetic wears off. I remember the sensation of my itchiness wasn’t normal itchy, it was more like a stinging throughout my body. They said this is due to the anesthesia. They prescribed me something to help.
4. Nursing your baby or pumping at the beginning causes your uterus to contract and is uncomfortable regardless on how you deliver your baby, but when you deliver by c-section nursing/pumping is way worse. Holding your baby in the football hold position is the best way to not irritate your incision. Place a nursing pillow on your lap away from your incision and put your baby in the football hold position, you may need help doing this for a while, then start nursing. It will hurt no matter what you do, but it will get better with time.
5. You will probably experience a lot of swelling in your legs, feet, face, and hands due to all the fluids they pumped you full of. Drinking lots of water and walking around will help flush it out.
6. 2-4 hours after your catheter is out they will ask you to get up and go to the bathroom, if you haven’t already. This first time out of bed will hurt more than any labor pain you’ve ever experienced. You will not be able to stand up straight, walking will hurt. Getting on and off the toilet, even going to the bathroom will hurt so bad!
7. You will still have postpartum bleeding with a c-section, and you still can’t put anything inside you until 6 weeks post-op. So, the mesh panties and diaper pads you’ll use at the hospital. If you can take some of those mesh panties home that would be great because they won’t rub on your incision and will hold your pads in when you’re home. Your bleeding won’t be as heavy as it would be with a vaginal birth, but you will still definitely have bleeding for up to 6 weeks.
8. They will highly advise you to start walking around 12 hours post-op. This was so hard for me. I was in so much pain and my body just didn’t feel ready to start walking around yet (I wasn’t getting pain meds at this point though, only Tylenol, so I was in a ton of pain!) Getting in and out of bed to go to the bathroom was hard enough for me. Thank heavens for those hospital beds that raise you up to get in and out of bed easier. Once you’re home, you won’t have this, unless you have one of those fancy beds. Try sleeping in a reclining chair for a while, this helped me. I slept there for 3 weeks and the first time I slept in my bed it was so uncomfortable and painful. When you do sleep in your bed and need to get out, roll over onto your side and pull yourself up slowly with your arm, then pull your legs over the side of the bed, then stand. This should help a little with the pain.
9. Peeing, pooping, laughing, coughing, and sneezing will hurt…A LOT…for at least two weeks! I have no advice for peeing and pooping, besides keeping up with stool softeners, laxatives, and drinking lots of water. This pain is hard to explain, but it hurts your incision and uterus so badly when you go to the bathroom. It’s like you can feel it all moving through your system. You feel like your incision site is going to burst open! When you go pee, you may experience burning/stinging; and/or the sensation of your bladder not feeling empty once you’ve gone, it’s so annoying, but it will get better with time. Laughing, coughing, and sneezing…HURTS, try supporting your incision with a pillow or your hand to stop it from being so painful. Belly bands can help a lot to support your abs and incision.
10. Gas pains! You may experience horrific gas pain and releasing your gas will hurt and be really uncomfortable. You may even feel your gas pains in your shoulders and back. I know weird, but seriously, your shoulder and back may ache due to gas. Try anti-gas meds and see if that will help relieve it. Drinking lots of water and walking around will also help keep your bowels active.
11. Your shoulders and back pain could be from your epidural as well. Your back may feel really tender from your epidural. You may even experience a pretty bad headache afterwards. Rest lots; and keep up with your pain meds.
12. You may be left with something called a c-section “shelf.” This is uneven scar tissue that creates a little shelf above your incision. You may notice more tenderness and swelling on that side of your incision than the other. The scar tissue should soften over time; but may never disappear completely. I have this on my right side of my incision and it’s been almost two years now and it’s still the same.
13. Tingling, itching, and numbness along the scar is normal. It’s terrible, but normal. This happens because of your doctor cutting through layers of skin, tissue, and nerves. Its’ not unusual for this to last for several years. My doctor calls these “zingers.” I truly hate them. It’s been almost two years since my c-section and I still can’t be touched on my scar. It sends an instant jolt of tingling/zings in my incision spot, and a little above it, it’s no fun!
14. Your scar might freak you out. It could be kind of gnarly. It may have thicker scar tissue in areas and it may be bumpy and thick in some spots. Some areas may be more tender than other areas.
15. Everyone heals differently and bounces back from a c-section at their own pace. Give yourself at least 6-8 weeks to fully heal and feel back to yourself again. When I hit 5 weeks I really started feeling good again.
There you have it! I really hope this is helpful! I know it would have made a HUGE difference for me to have a list like this before I had my c-section. Obviously, you can’t stop these things from happening, but at least you will know what’s coming, how to handle it better, and that’s it’s normal.
For more information to prepare you for a c-section go HERE.
When I was pregnant with my twins I knew I was going to need a c-section because Baby A was breech and never turned.
Some of my biggest fears every time I have gotten pregnant is needing to deliver by c-section and not carrying to full term. I had abdominal surgery before when I was a teenager and it was painful and super scary, so I think that’s one contributing factor to my fear of c-sections. I also have been in preterm labor before and so with my twins-pregnancy both of those feared were confirmed.
I knew that I didn’t have a choice and it was going to happen no matter what; I was going to have preemie babies and I was going to need a c-section to get them here. I had time to wrap my head around it all and prepare myself. So, I thought; but NOTHING can prepare you for preemie babies and a c-section.
I asked my doctor multiple questions about the surgery and NICU at almost all my appointments to better prepare myself. She knew my fears and was very supportive and understanding.
I thought I was ready, until it all happened.
THE BIGGEST THING I WISH I DID BEFORE MY C-SECTION WAS RESEARCH AND UNDERSTAND THE RECOVERY PART OF A C-SECTION.
I definitely prepared myself for the procedure part of a c-section. My doctor gave me the run-down of how it all worked multiple times. She gave me an estimated time of how long it’ll take start to finish, how long it usually takes to get the first baby out and then the second. She really helped me understand and know what to expect.
Of course, my doctor explained to me how long recovery should take, how long I can’t drive, lift anything over ten pounds, no exercising, to not do anything strenuous, no sex, no bathing or swimming. She told me all of that.
What she didn’t tell me was how much pain I’ll be in; all the sensations I’ll feel, the possibilities of becoming really sick during surgery and afterwards, how I won’t be able to sleep in my bed for weeks. She didn’t mention any of that.
Now, I understand everybody is different and they may handle surgery and procedures differently, but over-all there has to be some common symptoms everyone experiences after a c-section, right?
Why didn’t she tell me those things?
I guess it’s my fault because I didn’t really ask. I didn’t read up on it either and I honestly didn’t really think too much about it. I was focused and concerned for the surgery itself than the recovery.
I mean I knew it wasn’t going to be a walk in the park, but I know so many people who have had c-sections and I have heard horrifying experiences and easy experiences. I just figured I am tough and I can handle it.
The surgery part isn’t fun, but it’s the easy part because you aren’t the one doing anything. This part is in your doctor’s hands, you just lay there feeling nauseous, possibly throwing up, feeling anxious, scared and nervous, and listening to everything happening around you.
The recovery part is all on YOU! This is in your hands and you are the one experiencing it. So, I highly recommend knowing exactly what to expect after a c-section and exactly what you can do to get through it.
9 TIPS TO HELP YOU RECOVER FROM A C-SECTION
1. TAKE YOUR PAIN MEDICATIONS– This is HUGE! I am NOT JOKING! Stay on top of them and take them REGULARLY. My husband works in the Substance Abuse Counseling field and so it’s natural for me to be terrified of taking pain medication because of the fear of getting addicted to them. Plus, I get very nauseous and vomit a lot when I take pain medication, so I tend to avoid them at all costs. DON’T DO THAT! Take them religiously until you are starting to get your strength back and feeling a little better, then start taking them less often until you no longer need them at all.
2. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY– You are the only one that knows how you feel. If you feel your body is not ready to get up and start walking around, then don’t do it! The nurses and your doctor will tell you to start walking as soon as possible after surgery (more like 12 hours afterwards.) They’ll say it’ll help speed up your recovery, they are probably right, but if you are not feeling up to it then give yourself a little bit more time. Walking to your bathroom and back to your bed is good enough the first day post-op! Day two and three post-op start taking smaller walks around the hospital and your room. Once you are home continue to listen to your body throughout your recovery. Don’t over do it and push yourself too hard.
3. STAY IN THE HOSPITAL AS LONG AS YOUR INSURANCE ALLOWS– Take advantage of the hospital, take advantage of the help and the opportunity to rest. I am pretty sure most insurances allow 4 days post-op recovery. I know hospitals are uncomfortable and annoying, but not having as many demands in the hospital like you will have at home and having help from the nurses will really help your recovery get a good jump start.
4. REST– This is going to be so hard to do once you leave the hospital, but rest as much as you can. I know you have a newborn and possibly other children to tend to, but you need to rest so your body can heal. Over doing it will push your recovery back.
5. GET HELP– Ask for help from family, friends, and neighbors. This was so hard for me because I am the type of person that likes to do everything for myself and I hate feeling like a burden. You are going to need help though, so take it!
6. BE KIND TO YOUR BODY– Once you are home it is important to keep moving. Take small walks. Try to avoid stairs as much as possible, gather everything you need and stay on one floor. Don’t lift anything that weighs more than your baby. Don’t exercise, have sex, move furniture, vacuum, mop, or drive (you can start driving when you can slam on your breaks without pain and are no longer on pain medication, usually 2-3 weeks post-op.)
7. TAKE CARE OF YOUR EMOTIONAL NEEDS– As you are taking care of your physical needs be sure to take care of your emotional needs as well. Your body is experiencing a lot. It is hard enough taking care of a newborn, possibly other children as well, plus recovering from surgery. It’s ok if your emotional and mental state isn’t exactly where you want it to be. Make sure you are talking about your feelings and frustrations. Make sure you have good emotional support and are expressing your thoughts and feelings.
8. EAT A NUTRIENT FILLED DIET– Make sure you are eating good, healthy foods, high in iron, fiber, and protein; drinks lots of water.
9. BE PATIENT– This will probably be the longest, most tiring 6 weeks of your life, but it will pass, I promise! Be patient with your body and don’t compare it to other people who have had c-sections, everyone is different. If it takes you longer to heal don’t think you are doing something wrong, you’re not, your body just takes longer and that’s ok, be patient.
I hope this list is helpful to you on recovering from your c-section. Good luck! I’m so sorry you have to go through this, it’s no fun! Luckily, you have a beautiful, sweet baby to help distract you a little bit from all this.
Please keep reminding yourself that you just had MAJOR SURGERY! It may not seem that way because we hear about c-sections all the time and they are so common that I think it takes away from the severity of it. But it’s a BIG DEAL! It’s SURGERY! It’s going to take time to heal and you have to take all the necessary precautions to make sure you do.
For a more detailed list on all the things no one tells you about c-sections go HERE
Congratulations mommy on your sweet bundle of joy!
You have sure been through a lot these past 9 months! Carrying that sweet baby, giving birth to it, now trying to heal on top of taking care of it, along with any other things that need your attention! I’m sure your body is completely exhausted.
There’s a lot happening in your life right now and I’m sure your first-priority is tending to your newborn baby, which means you’re probably putting yourself on the back burner, but you need to take care of yourself too!
Recovering after giving birth is not the most comfortable and glorious thing in the world, thank heavens for the beautiful distraction you get to snuggle with all day to numb some of the pain. 😊
Every delivery is different, and everyone experiences pain differently so please keep that in mind. I don’t know your exact circumstance, but I hope that these tips will help someone.
First off, you need to make sure you have good, heavy duty pads at home because once you leave the hospital you’re on your own. Absolutely no tampons or anything for that matter is allowed inside of you until after your 6-week appointment and your doctor gives you the ok.
Your heavy bleeding should only last up to two weeks, but you may still bleed up to 4-6 weeks postpartum.
Those mesh panties they use at the hospital are lifesavers, if you can somehow get some of those, that would be great! If not, I have always just bought regular underwear a size bigger than normal and they have worked just fine.
The three most important things you need to do for yourself before we get into everything else is:
- SHOWER! I don’t know why but showering always makes you feel better.
- EAT! Make sure you’re eating! You’re so busy and so exhausted and you honestly probably don’t feel great, so eating is the last thing on your mind, but eat, good, healthy food!
- DRINK! Drink lots and lots of water!
Ok, now we can get into EVERYTHING else that comes along with giving birth.
TEARING, EPISIOTOMY, & STITCHES…OH MY!
You may have torn really bad or hardly at all, you may have needed an episiotomy, either way this means you had to get stitches.
There are four degrees of tearing, 1 being minor, 4 being severe. With my first born I tore at a 2. With my second I didn’t tear much at all, but still required stitches. Obviously the bigger the tear the more painful it will be, but regardless which size it is it’s still painful.
If you got an episiotomy (this is when your doctor makes an incision) you’ll definitely need to be stitched up. Every doctor is different when it comes to episiotomy’s some prefer to do them before you even show signs of possible tearing to better control it, others prefer you to tear because they feel it’ll heal better because it’s more natural. Either way, it doesn’t really matter you’ll still need stitches.
Stitches are no fun down there that’s for sure. When you walk, move, twist, bend, sit anything, your stitches pull, which causes burning and stinging.
- Ice packs help a lot, make sure to put ice on it for the first 12 hours after you deliver. The nurses in postpartum usually make sure of this and help you, but really ice it as much as you can, even when you’re home.
- Sitz baths- pour ½ cup of Epsom Salt (make sure it is pure magnesium sulfate with no perfumes) into a few inches of warm water. Have enough water in the tub to cover your bottom. Hang out there for a good 20 minutes. You can do this 3-4 times a day. I know it’s hard to find time to do this with a newborn, but it really helps a lot.
- Avoid a deep, tub bath until 4-6 weeks postpartum.
- If it hurts to sit, sit on top of a soft pillow, the extra padding can really help.
- When you go pee use your peri-bottle to clean yourself up, DO NOT WIPE!
- Before you poop make sure you are consistently taking your stool softener. If you are really worried about this take Miralax too if you want. I’m not going to lie pooping will hurt, especially if you were backed up before. Don’t hold it in though because then you’ll get even more backed up and it’ll hurt worse. Try not to strain yourself either. Use your peri-bottle to clean yourself up the best you can, then finish with wiping gently with Tucks pads (Witch Hazel pads.)
- When you pee it will most likely burn; and your frequent peeing doesn’t magically stop because you’re no longer pregnant, so you’ll be peeing often. If you tore at a 3-4 you’ll definitely be feeling a burning sensation, I’m so sorry! If you experience this try peeing while using your peri-bottle from the hospital. When I say use while peeing, I mean squirt the water while you are peeing, it’ll dilute the pee so it won’t sting so much. Try peeing while showering too, weird, I know, but it really will feel better. Another thing you can do is squat over the toilet and lean far over, like almost putting your head on the floor and then go. The less pee you get on your stitches the better.
- For the pain, keep up with your pain meds, Tylenol, Ibuprofen, whatever it is your doctor has prescribed for you to take.
- If you have stairs try and stay on one floor as much as possible. Gather everything you need for the day and stay on that main floor so you’re not going up and down the stairs as often.
- Rest lots and get the help you need. Recovering is hard because you have a baby now too, possibly even more children at home. You’re already exhausted from giving birth and now you’re up all hours of the night caring for your baby, so ask for help and sleep as often as you can. Your body needs rest to heal.
If you experience hemorrhoids (swollen and inflamed veins around the rectum), I’m so sorry! These little suckers seriously are the worst! They are painful, itchy, and annoying!
They will eventually go away on their own, but it’ll take time.
Here’s a list of things to help:
- Ice packs
- Tucks pads (Witch Hazel pads) are AMAZING for these! You can buy them at any pharmacy, you’ll probably come home with some from the hospital.
- Hemorrhoid cream. These creams always burn me, but they do help the swelling. You’ll probably get some of this from the hospital as well.
- Sitz baths- pour ½ cup of Epsom Salt (make sure it is pure magnesium sulfate with no perfumes) into a few inches of warm water. Have enough water in the tub to cover your bottom. Hang out there for a good 20 minutes. You can do this 3-4 times a day. I know it’s hard to find time to do this with a newborn, but it really helps a lot.
- It’ll hurt when you poop. So, before you go keep taking stool softeners, and Miralax if needed. After you go use your peri-bottle to clean yourself the best you can. Wipe very gently with your Tucks pad.
BACK PAIN AFTER DELIVERY
Back pain is common after delivery and it may take a while for it to go away.
There can be a lot of contributing factors to this:
- Getting an epidural can result to back pain. The area you received your epidural may be tender for quite some time. You can also experience shooting pains in your back from it.
- Using muscles during delivery you haven’t used before can cause your back to ache.
- Your uterus stretching out during pregnancy and now returning to its normal state can put pressure on your back.
- Exhaustion and stress from taking care of a newborn
- Poor posture from holding your baby, breastfeeding, standing or sitting a lot
- Rapid weight gain and loss
- Your hormones can loosen your joints and ligaments causing aches and pains
- Your hips stretching from pregnancy causing your body to be out of alignment
HOW TO HELP RELIEVE BACK PAIN
- Hot and cold compresses can help
- Small, easy stretches
- Gentle exercise, like walking
- Pay attention to your posture and correct it when it’s not right
- Sleep in a recliner if needed for a while
- Make sure you position yourself properly while nursing and are comfortable
- Go get a massage
IF YOU LOST A LOT OF BLOOD OR NEEDED A BLOOD TRANSFUSION
If you lost a lot of blood during delivery or even had to get a blood transfusion or multiple blood transfusions than you are going to feel pretty darn crappy.
When I had my first child I lost a lot of blood. I was so close to needing a blood transfusion; but didn’t end up getting one.
I was showering at the hospital the day after I had my baby. I started feeling faintish, I turned off the shower and called my husband into the bathroom. He came in and I said, “pull that cord” while pointing over to the emergency pull cord and I passed out in his arms.
When I woke up there were 4 nurses surrounding me and I was so embarrassed because I was butt naked on the bathroom floor.
So, you may experience faintness, dizziness, paleness, nausea, fatigue, loss of energy, you may even feel sick to your stomach.
If this is the case I would not feel comfortable being left alone for at least the first day or two after arriving home from the hospital. I would not walk while holding your baby. I would take all precautions necessary to keep you and your baby safe until you are feeling a little bit better.
Keep up with your Iron medication! Make sure your diet is high in iron.
Rest lots! Ask for help! Get all the help you need because your body needs to recover.
You’ll start feeling a lot better after a week or so.
If you are one of the lucky ones who don’t tear, get an episiotomy, hemorrhoids or blood transfusion/blood loss than you are on a happier road to recovery!
You’ll still have to heal, you did just have a baby, but your healing process will be much quicker.
Keep up with your pain meds (whatever was prescribed.) Sitz baths will be your friend. Keep up with stool softeners as well. Pretty much everything that’s mentioned above in the Tearing, Episiotomy, & Stitches section can give you good pointers, even if you didn’t tear or get an episiotomy.
3 weeks postpartum you should start to feel a lot better! Pretty much back to your normal self, depending on your situation. If you tore at a 3 or 4 then you may not feel completely great until about 5 weeks.
The rest of your healing will just take time. Give yourself a good 6 weeks until you’re completely healed, but don’t do anything (exercise, sex, anything) until you have your 6-week check-up with your physician and they give you the go ahead. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
Walking is really good for you, it’ll help you heal quicker and make you feel better, don’t over do it though. Drink lots of water as well, it’ll help you with your constipation, breastmilk supply, and just make you feel better.
I truly believe that healing from a natural vaginal birth compared to an epidural vaginal birth is so much faster and smoother.
I don’t know if it was just my experience, but I felt my natural birth recovery was way easier than my epidural one.
It is hard to know if it was the actual birth situation that played a big part in it or other factors.
For instance, my natural birth was my second child, I didn’t have to push as long so I didn’t have hemorrhoids, I didn’t tear anywhere near as bad as I did with my first. I didn’t lose as much blood.
Pretty much the entire situation was different. So, I’m sure that had a big role to play in it all, but I have heard many women say that their natural birth recoveries were a lot quicker and easier. So, I am not sure, but I’ll take it!
Now, go enjoy that baby and good luck with your recovery! You’ll be all healed before you know it!