Life after pregnancy changes on various levels varying from person to person. After a c-section, your body needs time to recover, heal, and revive itself. After all, it just went through a lot, mama. Life after a c-section isn’t always easy, but it gets better with time and the proper care.
Moving About After A C-Section
One of the first and most important things you should be aware of is that any movement will feel incredibly impossible after a cesarean birth. To make things more bearable for yourself, bring your pillows from home. Hospital pillows tend to be reasonably flat, and you’ll want good pillows to prop yourself up into as comfortable positions as possible.
Accept any help from family and friends to make it easier to get through the first few days. Take advantage of the different chairs in the hospital room to help you get into different positions. Now’s not the time to be shy; ask the nurses for help getting around. The sooner you can get moving, the quicker your body will begin healing, so try and take a short walk within 24 hours after the surgery if you can.
Recovering from an unplanned c-section can be extremely difficult. When a cesarean birth is planned, you have more time to prepare and learn what to expect. With an unexpected c-section, your muscles and body might have been labored for hours before those same muscles are cut into. Ouch. There is no strain before the surgery when a c-section is planned, so it’s easier to handle the recovery.
After your surgery, dissolvable stitches will be used on the inside layer of muscle and fat. They can be expected to dissolve within the first month or two after surgery. Staples are used for the layers of skin and get removed around the time you’re ready to leave the hospital. Some cases require the staples to be in a little longer. Your incision site will start to turn white within four to six weeks, resembling a typical flat scar. If you develop a keloid on your scar, no worries, this can be decreased or removed.
The area around the incision site will feel tingle or numb for weeks, sometimes months after surgery. Some women don’t ever lose the weird numb feeling around their incision, and that’s normal, too.
Getting Back In Shape
The recovery time for a c-section is about the same amount of time as a vaginal birth. After a cesarean delivery, you should wait six weeks and be cleared by your doctor before you begin working out. The first workout session after a c-section will require you to use much more core strength than you might expect. That includes walking, so take it slow and hold out on abdominal exercises until you’re back to feeling 100%. There’s no need to rush!
Life Between The Sheets
The first time you have sexual intercourse after birth (cesarean or vaginal), there will be a bit of pain. After delivery, your hormones go haywire, which can sometimes lead to severe vaginal dryness. Whether your partner is incredible at foreplay, have some lubrication ready to ensure things go nice and smooth. You may also have to get creative with positioning because you’ll want to avoid having your partner place too much weight on your incision site.
With time, your body will go back to normal. We can’t say the same for your life, since you now have a little bundle of joy to take care of. Give your body the time it needs to heal. Please don’t push it too hard and rush what isn’t necessary!