C-Sec­tion Re­cov­ery: 7 pieces of ad­vice for new moms af­ter giv­ing birth

Weekend Mirror - - CHILDREN’S CORNER -

Hav­ing

a cae­sarean sec­tion re­quires more re­cov­ery time for women than vagi­nal births, but there are a few things you can do to ease the process.

A study pub­lished in June 2017 claimed that chew­ing gum could help aid faster re­cov­ery of a woman’s di­ges­tive sys­tem.

The study, printed in the ‘Jour­nal of Ma­ter­nal-Fe­tal & Neona­tal Medicine’ found that, out of 3,000 women who had c-sec­tions, those who chewed gum im­me­di­ately af­ter surgery (three times a day) felt bet­ter.

But ac­cord­ing t o Janet Fyle, the Royal Col­lege of Mid­wives’ pro­fes­sional pol­icy ad­vi­sor, this isn’t a pop­u­lar re­search-backed method that is rou­tinely used.

She said there are many other op­tions women can try.

1. GET UP AND WALK AROUND.

It might seem like the last thing you want to do, but Fyle said the sooner a woman gets up and be­gins to walk around, the sooner the blood will “kick into ac­tion”.

“We grad­u­ally get women to get up and eat, to get the bow­els and di­ges­tive sys­tem mov­ing,” she ex­plained.

“Af­ter six hours, the woman should be walked around her bed and should sit up in her bed too.”

2. FIND COM­FORT AND PAIN RE­LIEF.

“The im­me­di­ate pe­riod af­ter a c-sec­tion is about com­fort and pain re­lief,” said Fyle.

“This is very im­por­tant. We can’t let the woman be in pain be­cause if she is in pain she won’t want to move. But if there is pain con­trol, then the woman is more likely to sit up quicker and move around.”

NHS Choices states once you have re­turned home from the hospi­tal, parac­eta­mol is rec­om­mended for mild pain, co-co­damol for mod­er­ate pain, and a com­bi­na­tion of co-co­damol and ibupro­fen for more se­vere pain.

“You may also have some vagi­nal bleed­ing,” NHS Choices states. “Use san­i­tary pads rather than tam­pons to re­duce the risk of spread­ing in­fec­tion into the vagina.”

3. GRAD­U­ALLY EAT AND SIP WA­TER.

“The most im­por­tant thing we do as mid­wives is en­cour­age the women to grad­u­ally eat and have sips of wa­ter,” said Fyle.

“You can eat and drink as soon as you feel hun­gry or thirsty. This, again, speeds up the process of get­ting the di­ges­tive sys­tem func­tion­ing prop­erly.”

4. GET HELP WITH THE BABY.

Help­ing a mother tran­si­tion to be­com­ing a par­ent is im­por­tant, even if they’re strug­gling with pain.

“Ev­ery woman will need sup­port and re­as­sur­ance,” said Fyle.

“They need to rest and have a lot of help with the baby while also feel­ing like they’re in­volved.”

5. KEEP­ING THE WOUND CLEAN AND DRY.

NHS Choices ad­vises you should gen­tly clean and dry the wound ev­ery day, wear loose cloth­ing and cot­ton un­der­wear, take painkillers and watch out for signs of in­fec­tion.

6. DO GEN­TLE AC­TIV­I­TIES ONCE AT HOME.

Women usu­ally stay in hospi­tal for three to four days af­ter hav­ing a c-sec­tion. Once you’ve re­turned home, you should try to stay mo­bile.

“Do gen­tle ac­tiv­i­ties, such as go­ing for a daily walk, while you’re re­cov­er­ing to re­duce the risk of blood clots,” NHS Choices states. “Be care­ful not to over ex­ert your­self.

“You should be able to hold and carry your baby once you get home. But you may not be able to do some ac­tiv­i­ties straight away, such as driv­ing, ex­er­cis­ing, car­ry­ing any­thing heav­ier than your baby or hav­ing sex.

“Only start to do these things again when you feel able to do so and don’t find them un­com­fort­able. This may not be for six weeks.”

7. SEEK MED­I­CAL AD­VICE IF YOU HAVE WOR­RY­ING SYMP­TOMS.

If you’re home from the hospi­tal and ex­pe­ri­enc­ing symp­toms such as se­vere pain, leak­ing urine, vagi­nal bleed­ing or a swollen wound, make sure you seek med­i­cal ad­vice straight away.

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