Your body goes through a lot of changes during pregnancy. After childbirth, your body and uterus needs time to recover which leads to postpartum periods.
It’s normal to have postnatal bleeding; as this is the way that your body gets rid of excessive blood added up during pregnancy. 50% of blood volume increases during pregnancy, and your body is well prepared for this normal blood loss after childbirth.
The first bleeding after childbirth is called Lochia.
If you delivered by cesarean (C-section), you’ll likely have less lochia than you would with a vaginal delivery.
First days or week, the flow will be heavy (like heavy periods) though the time span can vary from pregnancy to pregnancy and can be reduced depends upon the activity level. It is suggested to take proper rest.
About the end of the first week the flow should start to taper off, becoming lighter in saturation and color; as time passes, it will fade to a brown, yellowish or even almost-white discharge. Lochia should stop after 4-6 weeks of delivery.
If the discharge smells foul, you’re still noticing a lot of blood loss after the first four weeks, or the blood is bright red or if you experience fever or chills, these are signs of an infection. Then you should consult with your doctor as soon as you can.
Dos and Donts: Postpartum Bleeding
- Don’t use TAMPONS
Postnatal bleeding will be heavy enough that you’ll need to wear sanitary napkins. It is highly suggested to avoid use of tampons unless your doctor said it’s ok. Must wear period panties to get proper comfort and stain protection.
- Do take proper rest
If you strain yourself too much, you may bleed longer or start bleeding again after your lochia has already lightened or gone away. After childbirth, new mothers are likely to get into depression, commonly known as postpartum depression. It’s very important to take proper care and time for yourself.
- Do ensure absolute Hygiene
After childbirth, it is important to maintain an absolute hygiene to avoid getting any vaginal infections.
Getting regular periods after delivery
There’s no any thumb rule as to when your period will return post-baby. Here are some basic fundamentals:
- Women who bottle-feed can see their menstrual cycle return within 6 -12 weeks of birth
- Women who breastfeed may not get their period back for quite some time. When you breastfeed, your body releases the milk-producing hormone prolactin, which, in turn, keeps our levels of progesterone and estrogen low.
- A decrease in breastfeeding at night may lead to a return of periods.
You can read about easy breastfeeding tips here and nursing must-haves here.
We wish you happy motherhood!