Having a baby is the most wonderful and precious time in a woman’s life. At times, it can be hectic and for first time mums a little over-whelming but as pregnancy is the calm before the storm do as much research as possible and prepare yourself for this amazing life-changing experience.
Hair loss (eek!)
Soon after pregnancy is over (and your child arrives into the world!) you will start to lose excessive amounts of hair. But don’t worry as this is completely normal. The average person loses 100 hairs a day, but this slows down in pregnancy due to the change in hormones. After pregnancy, your body will compensate for this but usually after about six months your normal hair growth cycle will return.
Tender and sore breasts
After pregnancy your breasts become flushed, sore, and swollen as they are full of milk for up to three to four days after birth. Once the swelling goes down or until you stop breastfeeding, your breasts can begin to sag due to the stretched skin. There may be some leakage for up seven weeks after the birth.
Bye-bye linea nigra
Immediately after birth your uterus is still hard and round, weighing up to two and half pounds. After about six weeks, it will go down to a weight of about two ounces. If you had a linea nigra (brown line running down the centre of your navel) this should also have disappeared by this stage. Unfortunately, stretch marks take a little longer to fade but they do become more of a silvery colour and blend into your skin.
Some new mums can suffer back pain this can be due to poor posture during pregnancy or from stretched abdominal muscles. Usually, this is no longer felt about six weeks after pregnancy finishes, but if the problem persists it is best to talk to your GP or a health professional.
UTI and constipation
Now that baby has arrived the frequent visits to the toilet have finally subsided! But as your baby is no longer pushing on your uretha it can cause problems with urination. Some mums can suffer from incontinence or a urinary tract infection. Again, if this is a consistent problem speak to your GP or a health professional.
Some new mums suffer from constipation, this usually happens to mums who have suffered from constipation during pregnancy. A diet high in fibre and plenty of water, milk, and juices can help ease the pain.
What’s happening down under…
Your vagina may feel stretched and tender after the delivery. Shortly after the birth, you will start to have a vaginal discharge made mostly of blood and what is left of the uterine lining from your pregnancy. This is called lochia and can last for several weeks but you can usually start having sex again about three to four weeks after giving birth.