The first few days and weeks after having a child can be some of the hardest, especially if you’ve had cesarean. Recovery after c-section can be tricky and may leave you feeling overwhelmed. Let’s not forget about the very horrible mom guilt that can came up as well.
With all of this, recovery after c-section can seem almost impossible, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are my top five tips for recovery after a c-section for anyone who recently had one or is anticipating this as a possibility.
What Will Recovery After C-Section Look Like?
While recovery after cesarean may look different for everyone, there are a few things what will be the same. The scar will hurt, like a lot. This is completely normal so do not be afraid to mention it to your doctor or loved ones. If you are like me, you may not want to take may medication for said pain, but if you need to, take it mama. No reason to be in more pain then you need to. With that being said, it is important to get as much rest as you can the days following your surgery.
Tip 1 For Recovery After C-Section: Rest.
I know, everyone is going to tell you to sleep when baby sleeps, and while I whole heartedly agree with this, getting rest does not necessary mean sleep. Rest for recovery after c-section can mean taking it slow. Laying it down when your body tells you to. Or just mentally resting (which is a whole other conversation in itself).
It’s important for you to realize that your body just went through a major surgery. It may not seem like it, but that’s exactly what happened. The lower half of your abdomen was cut open and now it needs to heal. Which, means lots and lots of rest. So listen to your body. If you’re in pain, sit down. If you feel exhausted, lay down. If you can’t seem to get your words together and it’s hard to think straight (it happens) lay down. Doesn’t mean you have to sleep, although sleeping would be good, but it does mean you need to rest. So prop your feet up and binge watch The Office on Netflix.
Which brings me to my next tip: pillows!
You Will Want All The Pillows For Your Recover After C-Section.
Pillows, pillows and even more pillows. Like I mentioned above your scar will likely hurt. And even if you have the best mattress money can buy, laying on a flat surface for hours on end will do a number on not only your back but your c-section scar as well. So just like when you were pregnant, gather up all the pillows in the house and stuff them wherever you see fit. Under legs, behind your back, shoot even sit on some if it makes you feel better. And don’t be ashamed, I take my title as the Pillow Monster very seriously whenever I’ve had a baby.
Moving Around Helps With Recovery After C-Section.
I know it may sound counter productive, especially since i just told you to get as much rest as you can, but hear me out. I’m going to assume your nurses/ doctors had you get up and move around in the hospital, and there was a reason for that. Besides that fact that it helps with constipation (something I cover below) it also helps with the healing processes. The key here is to take it slow.
Getting up and going on short walks are good for you, but whatever you do, do not do so until you’re ready. And even then, take it slow. The first few days home will seem like a whirlwind of feeding, changing, and just getting your mind wrapped around having a newborn. Perfectly normal. But once that has passed, an important step in recovery after c-section is movement.
Walk to the the door from your bed a few times a day. Walk to the kitchen and back. And if you’re up for it, walk to the mailbox and back. Whatever you choose to do, it’s important to take your time. Move slow and increase in distance and speed as your body begins to heal. This isn’t a race, no one is going to steal your mail, it’s okay if it’s there for a few days, promise.
Constipation Is Bad For Recovery After C-Section
Okay, so I hope I didn’t scare you with that headline, but this is important. You do not want to be constipated after having a c-section. Trust me. And as scary as it may seem to have to push anything out after being cut open, it is important that you keep things “flowing” so to speak down there. How can I put this???
Imagine being constipated, now multiple that uncomfortable feeling by 1,000. That is what it will feel like if you don’t go often enough for recovery after c-section. Gross, put it needs to be said.
Eat lots of fiber and drink plenty of water during your recovery after c-section and things should go smoothly, literally. Okay, bad joke, sorry about that.
My last tip for recovery after c-section is a two-parter, first;
Understand that you gave birth. Period!
If recovering from a c-section was not your ideal birth, believe me, you are not alone. But at no point should you feel less them, not as good as, or like you didn’t give birth. Do you have a baby? Yes, okay then. You’re a mother and you gave birth. End of discussion.
However, if you are having a difficult time processing everything, again you are not alone, my final tip would be to journal.
Journaling During Recovery After C-Section
Writing down your thoughts and emotions is a good way to process everything. It can be hard to understand why it happened that way it did, and it can lead to us blaming ourselves. I know for me, once I started writing down my thoughts I was able to work through them which eventually helped me moved past it.
Accepting when something doesn’t go the way we planned can be hard, devastating even. So having a notebook to write things out can help a lot. In the earlier days after my c-section I also used my notebook to write out the good things. Things I enjoyed or was grateful for. And now when I need a pick me up, not only does this journal help me see how far I’ve come but it brings me back down to earth if I’m feeling less then lucky or like I’m a horrible mom. Because let’s face it, it happens.
Having a child is hard, having a c-section is hard. Dealing with everything in between is a new level of hard, but you go this mama!
With All My Love,