Motherhood changes your body inside and outside. Your clothing size, shoe size, breast shape, or hip-width might change after having your baby. The changes are evidence of what your body has gone through. As you adjust to your life with a baby, you need to remember that your emotions, mind, and body are also changing. Your understanding of these changes will help you in healing your post-pregnancy body. The following three tips will help you take better care of your body after having a baby.
If your stitches are due to a cut or torn perineum, they will heal in 7-10 days. Your body will absorb the stitches over time. It is essential to prevent infection by cleaning the stitches with warm water every time you use the toilet. You can do this using a squirt bottle to wet the area and then pat it dry.
Do not use toilet paper to wipe the area as you can irritate the stitched section. No matter your curiosity, do not be tempted to check the healing progress of the stitched area. If the area suddenly begins to hurt or the stitches seem wet, contact your doctor as it might be an indication of an infection.
If you gave birth through a cesarean section, the stitches would heal at different levels. Those in the skin should take 5-10 days, but the stitches in your muscle layer take longer to heal up to 12 weeks. Watch for signs of infection on the visible stitches. Signs of infection include a fever, weeping pus, swelling, and the incision area being red.
2. Bone Broth, Herbal Tea, and Water
Water is essential for breastfeeding, but it is a diuretic, which means no nutritional value. For this reason, you should diversify your liquid intake to include not only water but also herbal teas and bone broths, and soups at least twice a day.
Bone broth has good nutritional benefits, such as vitamins, minerals, gelatine, collagen, and cartilage, which heal your body. It would be best if you also took teas that encourage breastfeeding, alleviate postpartum blues, clear afterbirth bleeding quickly, and shrink the womb. Herbal teas are low in calories, making them an ideal beverage when trying to lose weight.
They are also rich in antioxidants as they are extracted from different herbs. They have anti-obesity features that help reduce your appetite, prevent the formation of new fat cells, and increase your metabolic rate. Examples of herbal teas you can take include green tea, black tea, oolong tea, and ginger tea.
Breastfeeding protects your baby from illness, provides the baby with a balanced diet, and lowers your risk of ovarian and breast cancer. However, you need calories to produce breast milk. Nursing moms should eat a balanced diet including lots of fruits and vegetables to get an additional 300 calories a day.
Do not worry about the extra food, as breastfeeding will help you lose the baby weight so long as you are eating a healthy and balanced diet in the right portions.
In addition to doing moderate cardio exercises, you can incorporate a postpartum workout to build up your torso muscles as they take a beating during the pregnancy. Core strengthening is beneficial to a new mom as the rectus abdominal muscles stretch during pregnancy, making it impossible to exercise them when pregnant.
In other cases, some women experience abdominal diastasis, which is a separation of the abdominal wall muscles. Therefore, doing diastasis recti exercises that target the condition will restore the muscles.
4. Abdominal Wrap
When a woman is pregnant, her center of gravity changes as her spine tries to accommodate the baby by curving in a convex manner. A postpartum abdominal wrap quickens the healing process by applying pressure on the abdomen area, minimizing recovery time.
There are postnatal body garments with 360-degree support custom-designed to help new moms stabilize loose ligaments, improve posture, retract abdominal wall muscles, and support the torso as vital organs return to their initial positions pre-pregnancy.
Getting back your body as it was before the pregnancy does not happen overnight. Do not look at celebrities and think that you can regain your body shape as fast as they do. Be aware that your body is different; hence behaves differently and might take longer to be the way it was before. Take one day at a time and do not panic as everyone’s journey is different.