Love your newborn days
Take these simple steps to help your body recover quickly from labour, and you’ll enjoy those special moments all the more
Simple tips to help your body recover quickly from birth
The first few days with your new baby are amazing, filled with little twinkles of pure magic as you get to know each other. And it’s a once-in-a-lifetime window of time that you’ll always remember. There’s just one hiccup standing in the way of the bliss: your body has been through one of the biggest events it will ever experience, and you’ll be all sorts of tired. “But there are lots of ways you can help it recover quickly in those first few days after giving birth,” says midwife Lesley Gilchrist, “so you can enjoy those precious days with your newborn. Everyone focuses so much on labour, but it’s also important to think about how you’ll feel after your baby arrives, and plan for that, just like you’ve planned for your birth.”
We’re guessing that you did a great job of caring for your body while you were pregnant, so it’s time to think about how you’ll support it post-birth. Your baby will be pleased you did.
After labour, your body needs time to recover. And that takes energy. And while that job might take second place to looking after your brand-new baby, it shouldn’t fall any lower down the list, no matter how much all your friends and family want to meet your new arrival. “The ideal scenario is that in the first week you have no visitors at all,” says Lesley. “The only people you want to come around are close friends and family who will help make food and clean. If you’re trying to tidy up so the house is straight, or make cups of tea or conversation with your visitors, you’re wasting valuable energy your body wants to use to recover.”
Before baby arrives tell everyone you’ll be taking a week to yourselves – and that you’d love them to visit after that. No one will mind once you’ve explained you’ll be resting. Then make sure you heed your body’s needs: “Use as many of your kilojoules as you can to recover,” says Lesley: “Eat, sleep and feed.”