As a relatively new mother, I still have vivid memories of how my delivery days went. My first child was delivered under emergency conditions. There was no game plan in place, she was ready to come into this world a month early and regrettably at a Broncos game. During my recovery I was laid up in a hospital bed for a week, immobile due to my c section, and completely dumbfounded by what had happened.
My second time around I came prepared. I still had the shock of going into labor but I knew what to expect post partum. And even though I had twins, my recovery was so much smoother. This time around I was proactive with my recovery. I had a corset for me to use after delivery (to help support my core after my c section) which allowed me to be mobile, I had a massage session scheduled (in the hospital!) to help with the swelling and gentle mobilization of my incision, and I started pelvic stabilization and Kegel exercises before I left the building.
Sadly, none of this is really taught to new mothers. We are taught how to deliver babies but not really what to do after. What amazes me is how often we as adults will go to therapy after a surgery or any major tear to our body yet we don’t do it routinely after giving birth. This is due in part by the lack of emphasis in maternal care versus neonatal. Bringing a baby home often takes center stage over the mother’s health and well- being.
Some points that we try to assess in the clinic when considering a game plan following the birth of your child.
Recovery. Are you planning on a c- section? Are you currently exercising?
Rest. Are you going to have any help at home.
Breastfeeding. Are you planning on breastfeeding and the impact this has on your hormones and ligament laxity.
Nutrition. Are you getting adequate nutrition to support breastfeeding
Mental health. Post partum mental health and support . Regular schedule OBGYN visits.
Birth may signal the end of your pregnancy, but it’s only the beginning of so much more. If you are an expecting mother please come visit us and we can develop a game plan for you following the birth of your baby. In my circumstance, I found the proactive way to be much more pleasant.