Ways to Recover Fast after Child Birth
If you have decided to return to work, think of all the positive aspects it will bring. Enjoy it, and value the quality time you have with your baby when you are home. And remember – guilt is a wasted emotion, especially if you can do nothing about the situation.
As well as paying attention to your emotional and social well-being, your body will need some time to recover from the birth and to return to normal, although this is never quite the same as before you were pregnant. All the parts of your body that changed to accommodate your growing baby will need to reduce in size, return to their usual position and your breasts need to prepare for lactation.
Your reproductive organs perhaps undergo the greatest change, as your uterus shrinks back into your pelvis and sheds the lining and any cells that are left from the placenta. This involves all the extra tissues, blood vessels, muscles and ligaments, which grew and developed during pregnancy, dissolving through a process of self-digestion and shrinking, called autolysis and involution, with the fluid being passed out in your urine – you will notice that you pass large quantities of urine in the first four or five days after the birth.
Unfortunately, because there is so much extra fluid in your system, your kidneys cannot cope with it all at once, so some of the fluid moves elsewhere in your body, often making swollen ankles and fingers worse than whilst you were pregnant. This is normal and any swelling should disappear within a few days.
You will also have a vaginal blood loss for some time after delivery, like a very heavy period, as any remaining tissues, together with the lining of the uterus, are passed out. These discharges are called lochia and are initially red and quite heavy for two or three days, then changing to brown for a further few days and eventually becoming a whitish or yellowish colored discharge which can last a few days or up to a month after delivery. Sometimes you may pass large blood clots: inform your midwife or doctor, who may ask to see any sanitary pads you have saved to check whether the blood clots contain pieces of placenta.
If you have had a vaginal tear or episiotomy in labor, you may have stitches or grazes in your perineum (the area between your vagina and anus), or your buttocks may be bruised, any of which can be uncomfortable at this time. Passing urine can increase this sensitivity as the slightly acid urine runs over your stitches or grazes. However, there are some things that you can do to ease the discomfort.
Your blood pressure, temperature, heart rate and breathing all returns to normal within a day of two of delivery. Deep breathing encourages your lungs to inflate fully after having been compressed by the baby and your diaphragm in late pregnancy. Your blood clotting mechanism changes towards the end of pregnancy in an attempt to prevent excessive hemorrhage during labor, which means that you are more at risk of blood clots (thrombosis) in the early days after delivery. Getting you. And about soon after your baby’s birth and ensuring that you do ankle-circling exercises will help to prevent this but if you experience any discomfort in your calf, inform your midwife or doctor as soon as possible. Your digestive system can take a while to recover from pregnancy, and constipation in the early days is not uncommon; this is often compounded by the fear of discomfort when you have your bowels open for the first time after delivery.
Dawn is a professional mommy blogger. She currently writes for Mommy Edition, a site that focuses on topics such as pregnancy, parenting, children, relationships or any subject matter in relation to mums.