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Navigating the Landscape of Postpartum Recovery

it really is different for every mum.


The arrival of your little one is a celebration, but it's also the beginning of a new set of challenges — especially when it comes to postpartum recovery. Navigating the physical and emotional intricacies of this pivotal period is tough, and it's different for every mum. From advice from those who have been through it, expert guidance and what we found helpful, here are our top tips for navigating the postpartum period and what to expect although it is different for every mum. The advice from your health care professional should be followed and if you are struggling with low mood or have any specific questions related to your recovery, please reach out to them for support.


Vaginal Birth Recovery


The First 24 Hours

After a vaginal birth, you'll likely feel a bit sore and fatigued. It's completely normal! Rest and cuddle time with your newborn are highly recommended.


Perineal Care

Tenderness around the perineal area is common. Ice packs and sitz baths can offer some relief.


Lochia

You'll experience vaginal bleeding, known as lochia, for up to six weeks. It's essential to monitor this and consult your healthcare provider if you notice any concerning changes.


Exercise

Start with gentle movements like walking and stretching after you've been given the all-clear from your healthcare provider.


Cesarean Birth Recovery


### First Few Days

C-section mums will typically stay in the hospital for about 3-4 days. You'll be monitored for any signs of infection and given pain medication as needed.


Incision Care

Keeping the incision site clean and dry is crucial. Follow your healthcare provider's advice for optimal healing.


Physical Activity

Take it easy, mum! No lifting heavy objects for at least six weeks, and only engage in mild exercise after consulting your healthcare provider.


Emotional Wellbeing

Both vaginal and cesarean births can come with emotional ups and downs. Hormonal changes, baby blues, or even postpartum depression are possible. It's perfectly okay to ask for help and support. You're not alone!


Breast Changes Post-Birth: From Milk Arrival to Leaks and Tenderness


If you’ve recently given birth, you're probably brimming with questions about what's happening with your breasts. From when your milk will come in to how to handle breast tenderness and milk leaking, we've got you sorted. Let's dive in!


When Does Milk Come In?


Colostrum Stage

Immediately after birth, your breasts produce a thick, yellowish fluid called colostrum. This 'liquid gold' is rich in nutrients and antibodies, making it perfect for your newborn.


Transition to Mature Milk

Your milk will 'come in' typically around day 3 to 5 post-birth, though this can vary. You'll know it's happening when your breasts feel fuller, heavier, and perhaps warmer.


Dealing with Breast Tenderness


Engorgement

When your milk comes in, you might experience engorgement—a feeling of fullness accompanied by swelling and tenderness. Cold compresses and warm showers can offer relief.


Sore Nipples

If breastfeeding, your nipples might become sore, especially in the beginning. Nipple creams and balms can be a lifesaver. Make sure to consult your healthcare provider or a lactation consultant if the pain persists.


Handling Milk Leaks


Absorbent Pads

Leaking is totally normal, especially in the early weeks of breastfeeding. Nursing pads placed inside your bra can keep you dry and comfortable.


Let-Down Reflex

You may notice milk leaks when you hear your baby cry or even think about feeding. This is your body's natural let-down reflex, helping to prepare you for feeding.


Common Questions


How Can I Prevent Leaks?

While it's hard to prevent leaks entirely, keeping a regular feeding or pumping schedule can help regulate your milk supply, reducing the likelihood of unexpected leaks.


Is Tenderness a Sign of Infection?

Persistent tenderness, especially when accompanied by fever, redness, or warm spots, may indicate an infection like mastitis.


The postpartum period is complex with the physical and emotional challenges and it differs for every mum. The advice from your health care professional should be followed and if you are struggling with low mood or have any specific questions related to your recovery, please reach out to them for support.


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