What is postpartum care?
- By Team TDO
Congratulations for having the baby. You are now officially in the postpartum period. Here are the things a woman should know about this phase.
- Within a few hours after childbirth: You can sit up and move around the bed. Moving early helps to improve circulation and reduces the chances of developing constipation, urine retention and other health problems.
- Compresses: Use warm compresses before breastfeeding and express your breast milk after nursing, to completely empty your breasts. Try using cold compresses on your breasts between feedings in order to reduce your milk supply and provide relief from engorgement.
- Constipation: Constipation is common after delivery due to relaxation of abdominal and intestinal muscles and hormonal changes. Fear of pain while passing stools at the site of the tearing of the vagina during childbirth makes constipation worse. Try to move around as soon as possible and eat vegetables, fruits, bran and drink a lot of water.
- Post-delivery healthy weight loss: The body needs time to recover from the delivery. Wait for at least six to eight weeks before considering weight loss. Talk to your doctor first. Do not skip breakfast. Eat two to three bowls of fruits and vegetables daily. Add fiber and starchy food to your diet. Avoid junk food and fizzy drinks.
- Depression: In the postpartum period, a woman can experience a variety of symptoms, right from slight emotional discomfort to depression. It is normal to feel weighed down with the responsibility of caring for an infant. You may feel more emotional, sad, helpless, anxious, tearful and let down. All these are common for some time after you deliver a baby. Get out of depression by asking your partner, family, and friends for help with the baby's needs. Don't hide your feelings. Talk about them with your partner, family and friends.
- Take rest: Rest as much as possible. Take small naps during day.
- Dump your stress: Don't make any major life changes during pregnancy or right after giving birth. Don't try to do too much or to be perfect. This will avoid any kind of additional stress.
- Talk to other moms: Learn from their experiences and get tips from them. New moms can support each other and share each other’s concerns.
- Relationship: New moms are busy feeding, changing diapers and caring for baby. By the time the mother and father get to see each other alone, she is usually totally exhausted, sleep deprived, cranky and sometimes doesn't want to spend time together at all. Try to find time to talk to your partner and be a couple again. Even few minutes are fine, when the baby is well-fed and asleep.
- Visit a doctor: Seek medical help if you have the following symptoms
- Fever with chills.
- Moderate to strong abdominal or back pain that is more than just an ache.
- Bleeding more than one pad per hour.
- Blood clots of the size of a plum.
- A foul smelling vaginal discharge.
- Burning when urinating or blood in the urine.
- Severe weakness, paleness, rapid pulse, increased pain, swelling, redness, or drainage from the episiotomy or C-section incision.