The postpartum period begins after the delivery of the baby and ends when the mother's body has nearly returned to its pre-pregnant state. This period usually lasts six to eight weeks.
The postpartum period involves the mother progressing through many changes, both emotionally and physically, while learning how to deal with all the changes and adjustments required with becoming a new mother. The postpartum period also involves the parents learning how to care for their newborn and learning how to function as a changed family unit.
A mother needs to take good care of herself to rebuild her strength. You will need plenty of rest, good nutrition, and help during the first few weeks. Benezra Women's Care is here to help...we can help you navigate through your post-partum time with the following helpful referral's and advice:
Your breasts will fill with milk a couple of days after birth. This is a normal process, but the swelling (engorgement) can be uncomfortable. Engorgement improves with time. To ease discomfort, apply a warm or cold compress to your breasts. Sore nipples from breast-feeding usually disappear as your body adjusts. Use nipple cream to soothe cracking and pain.
Eat high-fiber foods to stimulate bowel activity, and drink plenty of water. Ask your doctor about safe medications. Fiber can also relieve hemorrhoids, as well as over-the-counter creams or sitting in a sitz bath. Drinking water helps ease problems with urinating after birth. If you experience incontinence, Kegel exercises can strengthen your pelvic muscles.
Pelvic floor changes
The area between your rectum and vagina is known as the perineum. It stretches and often tears during birth. Sometimes a doctor will cut this area to help your labor. You can help this area recover after your delivery by doing Kegel exercises, icing the area with cold packs wrapped in towels, and sitting on a pillow.
A shrinking uterus after giving birth can cause cramping. The pain subsides in time. Ask us about safe pain medications.
Vaginal discharge is typical two to four weeks after giving birth. This is how your body eliminates blood and tissue from your uterus. Wear sanitary napkins until the discharge stops.
Do not use tampons or douche until your four to six week postpartum appointment, or until our practitioner approves it. Using these products in the immediate postpartum period may increase your risk of uterine infection. If your vaginal discharge is foul-smelling, please contact us. You may continue to have bloody spotting for your first week postpartum, but heavy bleeding is not expected. If you are experiencing heavy vaginal bleeding, such as saturating one sanitary pad within two hours, please contact us.