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Get prepared for the emotional, mental, and physical challenges that come after childbirth. Learn what happens in your postpartum body and mind, find out how to get enough sleep, and get tips for self-care.
After childbirth: 7 things no one tells you
#1 You'll be on an emotional roller coaster
Expect to worry about things that never crossed your mind before.
Is my baby still breathing? Eating enough? Warm enough?
It's common to feel weepy and moody after giving birth. But if you feel this way for longer than 2 weeks, call your healthcare provider.
#2 You'll be sleep deprived
Expect to wake up at least 3 to 4 times during the night. Try to sleep when your baby sleeps, especially during the day.
#3 You'll still look pregnant
Don't throw out your maternity clothes! It takes 6 to 8 weeks for your uterus to shrink back to normal.
Thought you were done with contractions? Nope! You'll still feel them as your uterus shrinks back down.
#4 You might shed
If your hair got thicker during pregnancy, it may start falling out. Don't worry – you won't go bald!
On the bright side, if you grew excess facial and body hair during pregnancy, most of it will fall out too.
#5 You're going to bleed
Take home the heavy-duty pads from the hospital. Both vaginal and c-section births trigger a vaginal discharge called lochia.
Lochia consists of blood, bacteria, and sloughed-off tissue from the lining of your uterus (FUN!). Don't worry – it'll taper off in roughly 10 days.
#6 You'll be scared to go pee …
It will probably burn when you pee, especially if you have stitches from a tear. Use that peri bottle!
#7 … and poo
Many new moms experience constipation and hemorrhoids.
Try to take it easy. Use your sitz bath and take laxatives.
Focus on what's most important: caring for your baby and yourself. Remember that YOU need care too!
Video production by Steff Lee Studios.