Your body goes through a lot of changes during pregnancy. After giving birth the changes continue.
There are some changes that are less talked about. I believe that for you to be best prepared it’s vital to know about them in advance.
When birth is over your healing begins.
Your body needs time to recover. This post is focused on the bleeding that is caused by the shedding and restoration of your uterine lining. This bleeding after childbirth is called Lochia. Your uterus is cleansing and it’s normal to have vaginal bleeding.
Here are a few things that can be helpful to know about Lochia: The bleeding typically lasts four to six weeks after the birth of your baby. It contains: blood, pieces of the uterine lining, secretions and white blood cells.
For the first one to three days after your baby is born, the blood you see will likely be bright or dark red. It may smell like the blood you typically shed during your menstrual period. There might also be a few clots in the blood, ranging from the size of a grape to the size of a prune. (It’s so important to know that this is normal, as this is the point that can freak some people out)…Between days four and seven, the blood should turn a pinkish or brownish color. Clots should get smaller or disappear.
Your healing is happening when you see that the bleeding slows down and then tapers off within a few weeks after giving birth vaginally or by Cesarean birth.
But know that these are a few things can temporarily increase the blood flow, including: Getting out of bed in the morning, Breastfeeding (your body produces the hormone oxytocin while you nurse, which stimulates uterine contractions and accelerates healing), When peeing or pooping.
*If at any point you see an increase in your bleeding that is not related to any of the above, please contact your medical care provider.
In the first 6 weeks/ 40 days, postpartum you experience many new things, support your body and emotional changes. By giving yourself plenty of time to rest as much as possible and to be absorbed in taking care of yourself and your baby. See that the daily meal prep and house work are taken care of by someone else.
Mabey this feels like something you will figure out once you get there. But trust me. This is not something you want to overlook!
Now with COVID restrictions this becomes even more important. As for many there are more limitations.
I recommended planning ahead, so that you have the time to set expectations for yourself and others. Set up the best support that can be available for you!