Health and Wellness

Recovering after vaginal birth -- all you need to know

Ambili S Kartha
0 to 1 years

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Recovering after vaginal birth all you need to know

During the postpartum period, the mother's body undergoes changes so that it retains its pre-pregnancy condition. Much the same as pregnancy changes vary with women, your postpartum changes can also vary. Mostly, pregnant women are focused and anxious on pregnancy and delivery. They won't think about or try to understand about the postpartum period before they reach that stage. However, understanding the recovery process can help you feel less tense about the changes taking place in your body.Also, it is important to notice the changes and to have an idea of changes that should expect. This will help you to confirm that the healing processes are happening properly. Continue reading to understand what you can expect during the postpartum period.

How Long Does It Take To Recover After Having A Baby?

It is mostly agreed that it would take approximately six weeks to recover from a vaginal delivery. However, it again depends on the intensity of the trauma your body underwent. Sometimes, you may require more time to heal from bruising, swelling, episiotomy stitches (that is if you underwent an episiotomy) and sore muscles. However, mostly after a normal vaginal delivery, if cared well, within eight weeks your body will come back almost to its normal state.

How Long Does It Take For The Stitches To Dissolve After Giving Birth?

Sometimes, to widen the opening of the vagina, a minor incision has to be made in the perineum. In some cases, a perineal tear or laceration occur on its own during a vaginal birth. Its severity ranges from mild to severe depending on the depth and extent of the cut. Both episiotomies and perineal lacerations are fixed by putting stitches. The stitches will cause pain and uneasiness during the initial weeks after delivery. These stitches need not be removed. Your body will absorb them. It usually takes between 2 to 3 weeks for perineal stitches to get dissolve.

How Long Does It Take For Uterus To Go Back To Normal?

One of the major changes that happen to your body after delivery is the uterus (which underwent tremendous changes in size, shape, position, and appearance as the pregnancy progresses) going back to normal size, shape, and position. The main signs the uterus is going back to normal are-

The course of the normal progressive shrinking of the uterus after vaginal delivery:

  1. After pains: These are the abdominal pains that you feel during the first week after delivery. This indicates that your uterus is going through the shrinking process. Most of these after pains will be dull and mild; however, some can turn sharp. It is quite natural to feel this pain when you breastfeed your baby. That is on the account of the fact that the hormone oxytocin released during breastfeeding encourages the contraction of the uterus
  2. Bleeding: Normal bleeding during postpartum is a sign of shrinking process of the uterus. This bleeding also tends to increase while breastfeeding as the uterus contracts markedly during this time
  3. One to two days after delivery: The uterus will be as big as 18th-week of pregnancy.Even you can feel the top of the uterus in the area of your belly button
  4. One week after delivery: The uterus will be as big as when the pregnancy is in its 12th week. It weighs around 300 grams
  5. Around six weeks after delivery: The uterus will be back to its normal size and shape and position(entirely within the pelvis) and go back to its normal weight (about 60 grams)

recovering after vaginal delivery

How Long Do Contractions Last After Birth?

Let's see why the uterine contraction happens after birth.

  • Just after the vaginal delivery, the uterus starts to contract as it contract during the labor. This contraction helps to detach the placenta from the uterine wall and helps in delivering the placenta
  • Once the placenta is delivered the uterus continues to contract and these contraction helps to close the blood vessels in the area of the uterine wall the placenta was attached

After this, the uterus progressively contracts to its pre-pregnancy shape, size, and weight. The pain that indicates the contraction will be severe during the first day or first couple of days and eventually decreases and will be gone in a week (maximum). However, the contraction continues for around 6 weeks by which the uterus attains its pre-pregnancy state.

How Long Does It Take To Lose Weight After Having A Baby?

The weight you gained during the pregnancy was progressive. Therefore, losing the weight should be also progressive. Crash diet and tiresome exercises will have an adverse effect on not only the mother but also the new born as the child depends on its mother for its nutrition. You will lose the weight of the baby, placenta, blood and amniotic fluid (which is around 4.5 to 6 kg) immediately after delivery. Within a couple of days, another 2 to 2.5 kg will be lost when excess water weight fades away.

After this, if you make sure the intake of calories is within limits, and if you are exclusively breastfeeding your baby(breastfeeding alone burns 500 calories per day!), you can lose those extra pounds in around 6 months. And post 6 months there are some exercises that can help you get back your pre-pregnancy look. Even if you are not exclusively breastfeeding your baby, but you follow a healthy lifestyle, you can regain your pre-pregnancy body within a year depending on your body type again.

Did you like the blog on recovery after normal delivery? Do share your thoughts and feedback with us in the comments section below?

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Mamta Goyal

| Oct 11, 2017

thanks for the information.... I have one query that my son is now 4 months old but still my tummy is not shrinking I am looking weight but not tummy fat.... please let me know what can I do

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Sharmila

| Oct 10, 2017

please help us with the recovery after c section.

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Nidhi

| Oct 10, 2017

helpful...... looking forward for similar blog for recovery after csection delivery

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lakshmi m

| Oct 10, 2017

very informative thank you

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ANITHASENTHILNATHAN

| Oct 10, 2017

thanks a lot for ur valuable information

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ANITHASENTHILNATHAN

| Oct 10, 2017

thanks a lot for ur valuable information

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Sunkisala Sunitha

| Oct 10, 2017

very much helpful information. Thanks

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Rutuja Kaustubh Purohit

| Oct 10, 2017

Extremely helpful. Thanks..

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Rutuja Kaustubh Purohit

| Oct 10, 2017

Extremely helpful. Thanks..

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