Giving birth whether it is via Normal Spontaneous Delivery (NSD), or via C-section, can have a huge impact both on a mother’s physical and mental health. Mothers can try to change their lifestyles to speed up their recovery. In this article, we will give you some tips for postpartum care.
C-section deliveries are common nowadays and this procedure can be very transformative for both the mother and baby, it may carry risks and may take a while to recover from the surgery. Postpartum care is very important, so new mothers should focus on self-care, expectation setting, and having a support system that will help them make their recovery from a c-section easier.
Immediately after delivery, women who went through C-section will experience cramps, vaginal bleeding, and blood clots. Doctors would also monitor the incision if there are any signs of infection. Vaginal bleeding could last 4 to 6 weeks after giving birth and is heaviest during the first few days.
Doctors would not recommend women who just gave birth to return to their usual exercise routine for at least 2 months as the wound would still be sore. However, exercise is still important after delivery. Intense exercises are discouraged, but as an alternative, walking can help with being fit, blood circulation, and maintaining good health. According to a featured article from www.apta.org, titled What to Expect When They’re Expecting: PTs Who Treat Patients During & After Pregnancy, Mothers can focus on strength and stability. It is also possible to put appropriate stress on tissues while exercising, without over-stressing those tissues. We highly recommend you visit your physical therapists, as they are skilled to examine and check which activities each woman is capable of doing.
Aside from exercise, another method to speeding up their recovery is getting plenty of rest. This is vital for any type of surgery. Although, resting could be a challenge with a newborn in the house. Newborn babies have irregular hours of sleep and would need to be attended to from time to time. It is best to seek help from your partner or your family so you can take breaks in between too. Or when the baby sleeps, try to get sleep too. It is normal to be overwhelmed by this new responsibility but always prioritizes your mental and physical health. It is okay to seek help as newborn needs can be exhausting. Caring for a newborn after going through a major surgery can be difficult, and it is hard for new parents to manage this all by themselves.
In addition to rest, maintaining a well-balanced and healthy diet is highly recommended. Your body went through a huge change during pregnancy and birth, and to properly nourish your body, make sure to eat healthily. Examples of healthy food that you may take are grains, vegetables, dairy, fruits, and protein. For mothers who are breastfeeding, lactation experts suggest that you eat whenever you are hungry and increase your water intake.
Giving birth can be a roller-coaster of emotions. Women who have given birth might have a hard time processing their feelings. These new emotions can make it difficult for new parents to transition to their new responsibility. In some cases, giving birth can be a life-changing experience and for some, a traumatic one. Talk to a partner, a fellow mother, a friend, or a therapist. Getting emotional support can help reduce the risk of postpartum depression. You may also consider joining a postpartum support group, whether in-person or online.
With the demands of new parenting, women should follow their doctor’s advice when it comes to managing pain. It is highly recommended to take the pain relievers prescribed by their doctor. If pain relievers do not lessen the pain, a trip to their healthcare provider would be best.
Always listen to your body. Pay close attention to what your body feels. This could be a warning sign for help. If you think, something does not feel right, then it isn’t. Something is seriously wrong if you are experiencing too much pain. Consider visiting your doctor for check-ups. Caring for your baby is important, so is caring for your own health.
If you went through a c-section and want to recover faster, then book an appointment with our women’s health champion, Dr. Monica Saliu, PT, DPT here at Tribeca Physical Therapy.