The Fourth Trimester and Postpartum Recovery
The baby is here! Everyone is happy and excited, but managing life with a newborn while recovering from birth is not quite that simple. The three months after you give birth, known as the fourth trimester, are a time of great change, and you need care and nurturing as much as your baby does. The caring physicians at Athens ObGyn are here to help you navigate this period in your life and learn more about postpartum recovery.
The physical and emotional changes that happen during your postpartum recovery
When you go home with your baby, you will get plenty of advice on self-care, but it’s a hectic time. Here is a reminder of the symptoms you may experience after you give birth.
- Vaginal soreness, especially if you had tearing during a vaginal birth
- Afterpains, or cramping, caused by the uterus shrinking
- Nipple pain and tenderness if breastfeeding
- Discharge and vaginal bleeding for a couple of weeks after birth
- A range of emotions, including happiness, stress, depression or feeling overwhelmed
If any of your symptoms are severe, including your depression, call our physicians. It’s vital to reach out for professional help when you need it.
Tips for surviving and thriving in your fourth trimester
As a new mother, you need help and support. Our number one tip is to ask for help and take it when it is offered. Here are some other ideas for the fourth trimester and postpartum recovery.
- Pay attention to your feelings. Call our ObGyns if you think you have postpartum depression symptoms or experience serious feelings of sadness or self-harm. Postpartum depression is a treatable problem. Please don’t suffer in silence.
- Try to get as much rest as you can, so your body can heal. Don’t feel guilty about sleeping while friends or family care for the baby. Rest is essential.
- Don’t ignore physical issues. If you are having a lot of pain after birth, call our physicians. Talk to our doctors about problems such as incontinence, fears of having intercourse, or pain when you do. No discussion should be off the table during your postpartum recovery. The physicians at Athens ObGyn are here to help with all your intimate issues.
- Try to eat a healthy, balanced diet that includes lean protein and healthy fats, fruit, vegetables and whole grains. Stay hydrated, especially if you are breastfeeding. Continue to take your prenatal vitamins during the fourth trimester, too.
Being a mother of a newborn can feel overwhelming, but don’t forget to take care of your needs, too. If you are concerned about postpartum problems, contact us for an appointment.