Postnatal Care - Symptoms, Causes and Remedies

What is the Postnatal Care period?

The time right after the delivery of a baby is known as the postnatal period, or postpartum. It can be hectic and stressful right after your child is born. The weeks following childbirth, also known as the "fourth trimester," are times of significant changes and fresh starts.

Three different yet continuous stages often make up the postnatal period.

  • First or Phase Acute, which is the first 24 hours following delivery.
  • Following delivery, the Sub-Acute Phase may continue for 2–6 weeks.
  • The Late Phase may persist anywhere from six weeks to six months after delivery.

Symptoms of Postnatal care

Pregnancy alters your body in more ways than you can imagine. Here are some physical and psychological side effects of the postnatal period after the child is born:

  1. Vaginal pain: If you tore your vagina after childbirth or your doctor made a stitch, the wound may ache for a few weeks. Larger tears may take longer to mend.
  2. Vaginal discharge: After giving birth, you'll lose the thin layer of mucus that lined your uterus during pregnancy, and blood will be present in your vaginal discharge for weeks. Initially, the discharge will be copious and scarlet. Afterwards, it will become less and less dense, changing from a pinkish-brown hue to an off-white shade as it gets watery.
  3. Supple breasts: You might experience full, hard, and sore breasts a few days after giving birth. To reduce or eliminate puffiness, it is recommended to breastfeed regularly on both breasts.
  4. Incontinence: During pregnancy, labour, and vaginal delivery, your pelvic floor muscles, which are responsible for supporting the uterus, bladder, and rectum, can become stretched or damaged. This may lead to the involuntary leakage of a few drops of urine while you sneeze or cough.
  5. Skin changes and hair loss: You will experience changes in your skin texture, and you will lose hair for up to five months after delivery, due to several hormonal changes in your body.
  6. Loss of weight: Most mothers lose about 6 kg of weight while giving birth, in addition to the weight of the placenta and amniotic fluid released during delivery.

Remedies for the Postnatal period

WHO estimates that the majority of maternal and neonatal deaths take place during the postnatal period. As such, here are some basic remedies or tips to take care of your physical as well as mental health right after giving birth to your newborn:

  • To relieve discomfort from vaginal soreness, you can sit on a cushioned ring or pillow. Applying a cold compress to the vaginal region can help relieve inflammation, reduce pain, and bring some relief. You can spend five minutes sitting in a warm bath that is only deep enough to cover your hips and buttocks.
  • Keep an eye out for extreme vaginal bleeding, which can quickly saturate a pad, coupled with pelvic pain, fever, and tenderness. In such cases, reach out to a medical practitioner immediately.
  • If you are experiencing severe breast tenderness, apply warm washcloths to the breasts or take a warm shower before nursing or expressing to reduce breast soreness. It might facilitate the elimination of milk. Use cold washcloths to massage your breasts in between feedings.
  • If you are experiencing extreme mood fluctuations, loss of appetite, severe exhaustion, and a lack of joy, speak with your family, partner, or friends. If the depression seems severe and does not go away, try consulting a healthcare professional immediately.
  • Eat a healthy diet and engage in regular physical activities that will maintain a healthy body weight.

Conclusion

During the postnatal care period, you will undergo several physical, social, and psychological changes. These occur due to changing hormone levels, getting physically better after giving birth, and learning to feed and care for a kid. It is also a time when, despite having many people around you for help and support, you may still feel lonely and helpless. Be assured that this feeling is very normal and will subside.

Request an appointment at Apollo Cradle, Hyderabad - Jubilee Hills. Call 1860-500-1066 to book an appointment.

1. Why is postnatal care crucial?

Postnatal or postpartum care is crucial since it ensures that new mothers are correctly recuperating from labour and delivery.

2. What elements do the postnatal period consist of?

Postnatal variables include all illnesses that appear within the first six weeks of life, including respiratory and urinary infections, hearing impairment, and blood diseases such as anaemia and thrombopenia.

3. What does the postnatal 5-5-5 rule mean?

The 5-5-5 rule implies: five days in bed, five days on the bed, and five days close to the bed.

4. What are the best postnatal exercises?

Swimming, yoga, and light aerobics can be practised during the postnatal period and are best for relaxing your mind and body.

5. What are the severe postnatal complications?

Complications like cardiovascular conditions, infection, or excessive bleeding following delivery (haemorrhage) may arise during the postnatal period.

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