Your motherhood journey starts from the day you find out you are pregnant and expecting a baby in nine months.
During your nine months of pregnancy, your body goes through massive changes and your hormones change as your body begins to make space for your baby and then adapt to the birthing process.
As the months pass, you gain weight, your body changes, your mood changes, you may feel stressed out, and worried.
Just like it took your body nine months to prepare for your pregnancy, your post-pregnancy recovery will also take time. Many women want to lose the weight they gained during their pregnancy immediately after giving birth. It is important to give yourself and your body enough time to recover postpartum and understand that the post-partum recovery period takes time until everything gets back to normal.
This article will guide you through your post-partum recovery journey providing you will the information you need to know about your body postpartum.
How long does it take to recover post-partum?
Whether you have given birth vaginally or through a C-section, postpartum recovery takes up to six weeks. All the changes your body went through will start getting back to normal and all symptoms should be gone within six weeks depending on the case of course.
What should I expect?
The first week postpartum is the most difficult period after giving birth. Most women experience a vaginal tearing during vaginal deliveries, during the first week of recovery, your vagina will be very sore and tender. If you had a C-section, your body and scar will also need major recovery because of the surgery.
You will have lochia, also known as postpartum bleeding, which will be heavy bleeding as your body and uterus cleanses itself. Your breasts and nipples will be very sore as your body prepares itself for breastfeeding.
Your breasts will start producing breast milk a few days after giving birth. If you suffer from engorgement, where you feel like your breasts are too painful and full, putting ice packs and massaging your breasts will help relieve the pain. Pumping will also relieve any breast pain caused by engorgement.
You may experience period like cramps as your uterus begins to shrink back to its normal pre-birth size, and other symptoms such as constipation, diarrhea, and trouble or pain during urination. Some women may also experience trouble controlling their bladder.
After the first week passes, your bleeding will begin to decrease, you may experience some occasional contractions and all other symptoms begin to slowly improve. During your pregnancy, you will notice your hair becoming thick and long, however, one thing you will definitely notice postpartum and during breastfeeding is extreme hair loss.
By the time you reach six weeks of postpartum recovery, your body will begin to almost fully recover. If everything is normal, your doctor will allow you to exercise and have sex.
When will I get my period after giving birth?
If you don’t breastfeed, you may get your period five to six weeks postpartum. However, breastfeeding may delay your period until you wean your baby.
It is important to rest as much as possible after giving birth to allow yourself both physically and mentally to recover and prepare yourself for your new journey as becoming a mother. If you feel like you are suffering from baby blues or depression, please speak to your doctor and seek help.