Congrats to you! You have survived the months of your pregnancy and delivered your beautiful bundle of joy. As wonderful as it is, becoming a new mom can be incredibly overwhelming both emotionally and physically. There is no doubt that after you have delivered your baby either vaginally or by c-section, you will probably experience at least one of the post-pregnancy problems discussed below.
There are multiple possibilities, but these are some of the most common post-pregnancy issues new moms encounter.
- Engorgement – Between the 2nd and 5th day of delivery, breast milk will increase to a much larger volume. You can become engorged with this milk if not careful. Your breasts may feel very large, hard and hot. Relief can come from ice packs and hot towels or hot shower. The most important thing is to get the milk out whether you feed the baby more often or use a breast pump to get milk out. You can store all this milk for later.
- Sore and Leaking Nipples – You are getting used to nursing and that can take some time and patience for you and the baby! Generally, if the baby is nursing properly, sore nipples will go away in about two days. Leaking nipples can occur because of all the excess milk. Fortunately, there are leaking pads you can put in your nursing bra to save embarrassment!
- Leaking Urine – After a vaginal delivery, muscles will be stretched out and you may leak urine due to this. Wear pads regularly until corrected and kegel exercises are very important in helping your muscles heal!
- Constipation – Can be caused from a variety of issues but many times is due to pain medications you may be taking. This symptom should hopefully subside very quickly provided you drink lots of water.
- Painful Sex – It is best to wait 4 to 6 weeks after a vaginal delivery to have sexual intercourse. Sex can be very painful up to 3 months or so after delivery and is often because if you are breastfeeding, it drains your body of estrogen which in turns causes vaginal dryness.
- Depression – It is common for the “baby blues” to exist for a few weeks after delivery. You are trying to get used to all your new responsibilities and you are incredibly tired. Generally this will go away but, according to WebMD, up to 20% of women experience severe postpartum depression. Enlist all the support you can during this time from family and friends and go see physician immediately.
- Vaginal Bleeding or discharge – This is very common for up to two weeks after delivery and can last as long as 6 weeks. You should also see it gradually change from bright red to almost a yellow tint. However, if very heavy bleeding continues, you must consult your physician immediately.
For more information regarding pregnancy and post pregnancy issues, visit this section of our knowledge center. If you are seeking to find a physician that understands all about pregnancy and the feelings, emotions and physical issues that can result from it, please call our Lake City or Gainesville location to set an appointment today.