Congratulations on the newest addition to your life! The birth of a new child brings with it many excitements, along with many challenges. You suddenly feel like nothing you are doing is actually for yourself. One thing to always keep in mind is that your postpartum care is important too.
Take These Steps For Postpartum Care
There may seem like there isn’t enough time in the day to factor in postpartum care, however; here are five steps to make the seemingly impossible, possible.
1. Attend Your Postpartum Checkups
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists explains the importance of making postpartum checkups an ongoing process rather than a one-time check-in. The first check-in with your doctor should be in the first three weeks postpartum. With the necessary continued care mapped out, there is room for a comprehensive postpartum check after 12 weeks. This is a pivotal time for women’s health and wellbeing. It is important that all questions and concerns are brought to the attention of your doctor, so you can receive the care that you need.
Your healthcare providers are there as a resource for any help you may need. At City of Oaks Midwifery, we understand the importance of maintaining a relationship with you postpartum. If you find yourself apprehensive about your health postpartum, do not wait to bring up those concerns with a healthcare professional.
2. Find Ways To Get Rest
It may seem impossible to find a moment in the day to take for your own rest. However, it is essential to your wellbeing and the baby’s that you do. With the sleeping and eating schedule of an infant, we know eight hours of sleep is hard to come by. There are many other ways to find rest throughout the day. Stanford Children’s Health provides a few ways to find mid-day rest.
- In the first few weeks after birth, find help for things other than baby and self-care.
- Sleep when the baby sleeps. While it may seem short, it adds up.
- Keep your baby’s crib near yours to save steps and time during feedings and putting them to bed.
- Don’t feel the need to entertain family and friends all of the time. Excuse yourself when needed.
- Try to find time to get outdoors every day.
3. Maintain A Healthy Diet
It may feel like the last thing on your mind to be preparing nutrient-dense meals. However, the food you put into your body can have a direct impact on how you are feeling postpartum. You need to be able to feel active and energized to care for yourself and your baby. In the midst of a full day of taking care of a newborn baby, women often forget to ensure they are getting the proper nutrients.
After the baby is born, it is common to want to lose the weight put on during pregnancy. However, extreme dieting or weight loss treatments can be damaging to you and a breastfeeding baby. Taking the time instead to focus on a nutritious diet can shed the weight off in a reasonable amount of time. It is also important to remain hydrated postpartum. During breastfeeding, you may feel very thirsty. Ensuring you are taking in enough water is important to combat that.
4. Be Aware Of How You Are Feeling
With the number of physical changes going on postpartum, there are also emotional changes to consider. The presence of a new baby can be overwhelming and cause feelings of anxiety and depression. While some of these feelings are considered “baby blues” and go away in a few weeks, there is the possibility of developing postpartum depression. Postpartum depression affects 1 in 7 of every new mother. It can lead to feelings of not being able to care for your baby or go about the tasks of a normal day.
Paying attention to how you are feeling emotionally is very important. If you begin to feel the signs of postpartum depression, take the time to talk to your healthcare professional about it. At City of Oaks Midwifery, we care about every step of your pregnancy journey. Emotional changes postpartum are something you can talk through with one of our midwives.
5. Accept Help
Sometimes it may feel like accepting help means not being able to accomplish everything yourself. However, the postpartum experience is one that you do not have to go through alone. Take the help that others offer whether it be a home-cooked meal or taking care of cleaning up your space. Friends and family who offer support are trying to help you through a time of intense transition. You do not have to do it alone.
Heading into the postpartum stage and don’t know where to start? Find resources on our website or call us at (919) 823-3695.