There’s no feeling on earth that surpasses the feeling of motherhood. It is exciting and, at the same time, a taxing journey. Meeting the little one you’ve carried for 40 weeks is one unique experience. However, delivering your child could take a toll on your mind and body.
The process of childbirth is a difficult journey, especially for mothers who have had a Cesarean Section delivery. Recovering from a C-Section calls for rest, good sleep, regular walks, breastfeeding, and pain management.
In this article, I will discuss a few tips to help you have a smooth healing process after a C-Section delivery. I hope you find the article informative.
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Recovering from a C-Section: Tips for a Smooth Healing Process
Unlike normal delivery, a Cesarean or C-Section is a major operation. Like any other operation, be prepared to handle the post-operative pain, and try to rest as much as possible. The healing process will be smoother.
Let us check out the tips to accelerate the healing process.
Get Plenty Of Rest
Understand that several body layers have been cut open to bring out your baby safely. These internal cuts will take a pretty long time to heal. But, expect to stay in the hospital for 3 to 4 days under constant medical surveillance.
God forbid, the stay could be extended if you have had a complicated pregnancy. Give your body at least 4 to 6 weeks of complete rest. I understand it’s easier said than done with a demanding newborn. Still, try to relax and keep yourself as comfortable as possible.
Use Ice And Compression
Inflammation and formation of blood clots in and around the 6 inches cut is very common if you have had a C-Section. There’s no need to panic if you find a section of your lower abdomen swollen. Go back to the basics and use ice for compression.
Normally doctors recommend icing every 2 to 3 hours for 15 minutes for the first five weeks after a C-Section. Wrap the ice pack in a clean towel and apply it over the affected area. You can also wear compression leggings.
Keep Yourself Hydrated and Well-Fed
In the need to care for the newest member, do not ignore your eating habits. Remember, you are a lactating mum and need to keep yourself hydrated and well-fed.
Drink at least 4 liters of water every day. C-Section results in a good amount of blood loss, and it is necessary to refill that vacuum. Gorge on healthy, nutritious foods because you will pass on these nutrients to your baby through breast milk.
Indulge in protein and carb-rich foods that assist in internal healing and result in a smooth recovery process.
Get Sufficient Sleep
It is a cruel fact that you need a lot of sleep after undergoing a C-Section. This helps to heal your body and smoothen the recovery process so you can be a happy, healthy mum.
Picking an ideal sleep position after C-Section can help you recover faster. Medical practitioners recommend that you sleep on your back or side for more effective recovery. I know a few mums who took the epidural injection and have trouble sleeping on their backs.
If you have had one, choose the most comfortable posture, and doze off.
Take Stool Softeners
As weird as it may sound, C-Section delivery is followed by severe constipation. I know a couple of cases where the doctor specifically prescribed rectal suppositories for the smooth passing of stool.
Constipation occurs because of anesthesia, pain relievers, and dehydration. Suffering from constipation post-C-Section could be excruciating because you already have incisional pain.
Most doctors suggest foods with natural laxatives and recommend drinking a lot of water. Alongside that, you may as well opt for stool-softening supplements.
Get Up, Get Going
As much as rest is necessary for quick recovery after a C-Section, it is also important that you take short walks as and when you get time. Initially, the process could be scary, but doctors and nurses recommend that you get moving at your earliest.
Take short walks to the washroom, or walk from one room to another when you are feeling better. This accelerates the healing process and helps you get back to your previous self.
A 2022 study found that post-C-Section patients who walked more had fewer post-operative complications.
Manage Postpartum Changes
Giving birth is an overwhelming experience. Women who experience traumatic births or emergency C-sections may have to process difficult emotional turmoil about the birth.
For many women, the feeling of transition to parenthood is difficult to handle. As a result, 1 in 10 women in America suffer from postpartum depression. Understand that postpartum depression, or PPD, is real. It is scary and, at times, could be fatal.
If at any point in time, you feel things are not going fine, DO NOT hesitate to seek help. PPD can result in a strong feeling of guilt and shame. Talk to your partner, or seek help from a therapist if needed. Remember, a happy mother raises a happy child.
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What To Avoid After C-Section Delivery?
No matter how much you want to get back to your previous self, post-C-Section delivery, there are a few restrictions you have to stick to until you are completely fit. The postpartum period is a very challenging time for both the mother and the family.
The maternal mortality rate is the highest during the postpartum period, and therefore, take utmost care to restrict the following activities:
- Lifting anything heavier than your baby
- Using stairs repeatedly
- Using tampons or menstrual cups
- Exercising until your doctor gives you permission
- Using public pools
- Sexual intercourse till your medical practitioner says that it is safe.
Motherhood is bliss. There’s no gift more precious than your own baby. But, at the same time, understand that your body has undergone a major operation. It needs an adequate amount of rest to recover.
A supportive family, great friends, caring medical assistance, and reasonable expectations go a long way in making this recovery journey and ensuing parenthood fun and manageable.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the easiest way to recover post-C-Section?
Hydration is by far the easiest and the best way to speed up your recovery process after a C-Section delivery. The body goes through considerable fluid and blood loss due to the operation.
What is the best sleep posture after C-Section delivery?
Doctors recommend sleeping on your back or on your side. Choose a posture that you feel is most comfortable, but do not sleep on your tummy.
How do I deal with back pain from epidural after C-Section?
Walking short distances helps relieve epidural pain. The more the hip muscles are in action, the quicker the relief. If the pain sustains, contact your physician.
How long does internal healing take post-C-Section?
Ideally, it takes 6 to 8 weeks to completely heal from your C-Section. However, the healing process differs from one mother to another, depending on the kind of labor she went through.