PostPartum Pregnancy & Birth

7 Things You Need To Know About C-Section Recovery

August 18, 2017
Regardless of whether you are recovering from a c-section now, or are pregnant and planning to have a c-section—we have tips that can help make your postpartum recovery easier. Remember mama, going through a caesarian section is ROUGH. Make sure that you reach out to friends and family for advice and support and follow our other vital tips to help speed up your labor recovery time. #throughmamaseyes #csection #csectionrecovery #csectiontips #caesarian #caesariansection #laborrecovery #postpartum #postpartumrecovery #laboranddelivery #secondbaby #pregnancytips #baby #pregnant

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C-Section Recovery is always tough on a new mother. It comes as a shock to those who were never really prepared despite the unknown in the direction birth can take.

I had 3 unplanned emergency c-sections after 20-52 hours of labor. My first c-section recovery was the hardest out of the three.

I was trying to be a superwoman and manage my pain but, in the end, I had to have a c-section which was really disappointing to me. As it is for many women.

We expect that our bodies will do what they are supposed to and when they don’t, we feel like we have failed.

Something that I did not realize was that my disappointment and, ultimately, depression contributed to a difficult c-section recovery.

It’s important for any mom that faces a c-section to keep in mind that situational factors can make or break your cesarean recovery.

Regardless of whether you are recovering from a c-section now, or are pregnant and planning to have a c-section—we have tips that can help make your postpartum recovery easier. Remember mama, going through a caesarian section is ROUGH. Make sure that you reach out to friends and family for advice and support and follow our other vital tips to help speed up your labor recovery time. #throughmamaseyes #csection #csectionrecovery #csectiontips #caesarian #caesariansection #laborrecovery #postpartum #postpartumrecovery #laboranddelivery #secondbaby #pregnancytips #baby #pregnant

In addition to feeling depressed over having a cesarean, I actually had postpartum depression (which I also did not know).  Plus, my son was extremely colicky and breastfeeding was painful!

All of these things contributed to a difficult postpartum recovery.

Based on my postpartum experiences with 3 different surgeries, I want to help other women know what to expect and how to manage c-section recovery. So, I have put together 7 tips on C-section recovery.

7 Cesarean (C-sEction) Recovery Tips to Help you Heal Faster #PostpartumRecovery #PostPartumHealth #Csection #healfrombirth #cesarean #recoverytips www.throughmamaseyes.com

This post contains affiliate links. Please see my disclosure at the end of the post.

1. Use a C-Section Recovery PostPartum Girdle

A C-section incision is low and it makes the abdominal area really bloated. It feels like your  insides are coming out every time you need to use those muscles. That’s why a postpartum girdle is a must have!

There are so many of these on the market. However, buying the right one for your body will speed up recovery and aid with moving around the house.

I purchased a C-Panty for all my postpartum recoveries.

I highly recommend it because it is a high waisted panty. With an incision so low, and with our bellies being so bloated after surgery we get a hang. That hang can then put more pressure on your scar, causing a lot of pain.  This wrap is a great option because it will lift the hang.

Honestly, this girdle was the only reason I was able to get in and out of bed, sit/stand, and laugh without excruciating pain. It also helped compress my belly and worked the same way a normal girdle does and made me feel comfortable.

C-Panty also has a medical-grade silicone panel that minimizes scarring, helps reduce itchiness and redness, and protects the delicate incision area. The silicone is durable, washable, and integrated into the c-panty, so you don’t have to hassle with scar gel or scar gel pads.

Bellefit has a comparable version of this which is a little more expensive and from what I hear has more compression. You can check that out here. 

2. Take the Medication During C-Section Recovery

Typically due to the nature of the surgery, we are given strong painkillers to take every 4-6 hours. If I didn’t take my meds EXACTLY on time I would feel the pain come back.

The day I got home from the hospital after my first c-section, I remember having a complete breakdown. My husband had gone to grab the medication since it wasn’t ready on our way home. I had my in-laws over & they heard me crying and got so worried.

They helped me out of the bathroom and put me into bed to rest. I felt immediate relief after having the painkillers.

Check Out This Post  My Attempted VBA2C Birth Story | Free Birth Plan Printable

Don’t feel like you need to try to space it out longer and make things worse for yourself.

C-section Recovery Tips Take the Pain Medication Cesarean Recovery

Photo by Gabriel Garcia Marengo on Unsplash

Take the painkillers for as long as you feel that you need them. I took them for about 10-14 days initially. Then I took it as I needed it since I was able to manage my pain.

You will also want to get constipation and gas meds. You may be able to get a suppository in the hospital or your doctor may prescribe an oral stool softener. Take it! You may not feel like you need it but constipation after childbirth, especially cesarean, is very common. (source)

I suffered after my first c-section because I didn’t know this. Taking your doctor’s recommendations will help you go normally by the time you are out of the hospital.

With my second & third, I knew what to ask for and before I left the hospital I was using the restroom like a normal human and I didn’t have to suffer for weeks.

3. Walk Walk Walk for Your C-Section Recovery

Movement is really important after surgery to help reduce the gas build up in your abdomen. Walking also helps with the pain and get the body back in motion after days in the bed at the hospital.

You can start walking as early as while  you are still in the hospital to help get the blood flow going in the legs. I didn’t do this the first & second time around and not only was my whole body swollen but I felt crippled and couldn’t move much.

Sitting/Laying down too much in one position can sometimes put added pressure on your incision so mix it up and walk a few times throughout the day.

4. Take time to Bond with your baby during Your C-Section Recovery

With most Unplanned/Emergency C-Sections, it is almost impossible to get that first moment and bonding experience as soon as the baby is born.

C-Section Recovery Tips, NewBorn Baby With Family, Connect with your baby after surgery

A newborn baby with family

Due to being in a surgery room, and also being drugged up it is really hard to breastfeed immediately or hold your baby immediately. It often doesn’t happen until you are taken to a recovery room where the baby is waiting for you.

I made sure to ask for the baby NOT to be fed any formula until I could breastfeed and I also asked for time to have skin to skin once I was able to hold them after surgery.

Any C-Section mom will agree that it feels like they were robbed of that emotional high of natural birth – getting to hold the baby, have immediate skin to skin & watch the umbilical cord being cut.

It’s so sad that we end up feeling this way which most times, results in moms feeling like a failure.

As a mother who has gone through 3 C-sections, I know this feeling all too well. In my 3 experiences, I didn’t hold my baby until at least 1-2 hours after they were all born. But I assure you,  it is possible to bond with the baby even if the first time you get to hold him is an hour later!

It is possible to feel that emotional connection, no matter how the baby was birthed. Please don’t let anyone make you feel otherwise.

And you can still enforce many of the same requests with a c-section that you would with a traditional birth plan, advocate for your rights as the mother.

Regardless of whether you are recovering from a c-section now, or are pregnant and planning to have a c-section—we have tips that can help make your postpartum recovery easier. Remember mama, going through a caesarian section is ROUGH. Make sure that you reach out to friends and family for advice and support and follow our other vital tips to help speed up your labor recovery time. #throughmamaseyes #csection #csectionrecovery #csectiontips #caesarian #caesariansection #laborrecovery #postpartum #postpartumrecovery #laboranddelivery #secondbaby #pregnancytips #baby #pregnant

5. Organize a MealTrain & Get Help for Your C-Section Recovery

Sometimes some women are able to have their moms or inlaws help them once the baby is born with cooking and general help around the house. Luckily, I had my mother come down from Dubai to help me with my first & third, but she couldn’t make it with my second.

C-section Recovery Tips Get a Meal Train to Help you with Meals. Cesarean Recovery

Photo by Gabriel Garcia Marengo on Unsplash

My lovely friends organized a meal train after my second & third babies. They brought meals to us every other day for 2 weeks. It was such a blessing. Don’t feel shy to ask your friends for help or hire help or get a Postpartum Doula if finances are available.

6. Rest it Out

C-section recovery is no joke, and even though you feel like you are super mom, don’t push yourself because, once you do, you risk an increase in pain, an infection and even more postpartum bleeding.

I remember with my second (read my birth story here) I felt GREAT after a week. So I pushed myself to do the normal stuff. Even though my postpartum bleeding had stopped around 3 weeks, I had heavy bleeding again along with strong cramps 4-5 weeks postpartum and unbearable pain.

The more I rested the better I felt, but not pushing myself too soon could have prevented that experience all together.

Don’t let yourself get to that point! Give your body time to heal before go lifting heavy things, driving, or pushing yourself too much.

7. Stay away from Shame

Sadly people love to shame c-section mama’s by claiming they didn’t birth a baby and saying they had the EASY way out.

We DID NOT!

If anything, a c-section recovery can be much more brutal than a normal birth recovery. We are all warriors for bringing our babies into this world even though it doesn’t always feel like it.

We have not failures and we should remind ourselves of what our bodies did, and what they endured.

That scar is a testament of your strength!

7 Cesarean (C-sEction) Recovery Tips to Help you Heal Faster #PostpartumRecovery #PostPartumHealth #Csection #healfrombirth #cesarean #recoverytips www.throughmamaseyes.com

 

Check Out This Post  What You Need To Know About Vaginal Steaming

Don’t let ANYONE make you feel like you didn’t birth a baby just because you had a c-section. Definitely, work towards a VBAC next time around (provided you are aware of any risks, it is medically ok for you and your doctor approves) but don’t feel ashamed or let anyone tell you otherwise. It’s your body, your decision.

I hope these tips were useful. If you have any questions about c-section recovery I would be happy to answer them. I am not a medical professional, so that cannot take the place of a doctor’s opinion, but I am a mom who understands where you are at.

Massive virtual hug to all my C-Section mamas!

 


 

Regardless of whether you are recovering from a c-section now, or are pregnant and planning to have a c-section—we have tips that can help make your postpartum recovery easier. Remember mama, going through a caesarian section is ROUGH. Make sure that you reach out to friends and family for advice and support and follow our other vital tips to help speed up your labor recovery time. #throughmamaseyes #csection #csectionrecovery #csectiontips #caesarian #caesariansection #laborrecovery #postpartum #postpartumrecovery #laboranddelivery #secondbaby #pregnancytips #baby #pregnant

Full disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means that I may get a commission if you use it to make a purchase. However, it costs you nothing and enables me to keep bringing you great content. I only ever recommend products I use and love myself.

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  • Reply
    Rambles and Runaways
    August 24, 2017 at 11:21 am

    lovely post, you are a warrior!! I thought I was going to have a C-section and remember feeling those same feelings of being robbed a vaginal birth. Its not what you imagine, but the baby arrives safely and you are healthy. I ended up being able to have a vaginal delivery in the end, but I know better than to feel those feelings now with the next child. All mama’s are warriors!

    • Reply
      afra
      August 28, 2017 at 6:56 am

      Oh yes a vaginal birth is NOT easy, and even if I ever have one I know it wouldn’t be easier but the recovery is a bit better and the harm on your body is less and that bonding experience with your child is priceless!

  • Reply
    Thena
    August 25, 2017 at 4:32 am

    Great post, I didn’t have a C-section, but for those of my friends who did, I know it was a longer recovery and painful as well.

  • Reply
    Morgan
    August 25, 2017 at 6:51 am

    I love this. I’ve had 2 c-sections. I have to say that it is a good excuse to rest and have snuggles with your new little love. I second all of your advice. The recovery is not as bad as you would think if you take good care of yourself!

    • Reply
      afra
      August 28, 2017 at 6:55 am

      True, but sometimes even if you do take care of yourself the first few weeks especially for someone who has never had surgery in their life is really hard 🙁

  • Reply
    ohmummymia
    August 25, 2017 at 12:28 pm

    I didn’t have C section but I think I will ask for it when I will pregnant with my second

    • Reply
      afra
      August 28, 2017 at 6:54 am

      InshAllah you won’t need it, but if you do the advice is here 🙂

  • Reply
    Danielle, The Frugal Navy Wife
    August 25, 2017 at 5:40 pm

    Such great tips. I haven’t had a C section but have a few friends who have and have heard them give this advice as well.

    • Reply
      afra
      August 28, 2017 at 6:53 am

      Thanks! Always great to pass on advice <3

  • Reply
    Jane
    August 25, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    Thank you for sharing! I’m currently 36 weeks pregnant with my first and terrified of having a C-Section. Recover scares me in general but I’ve never been cut open before and that is something I desperately want to avoid. I’m tucking this post away for later, just in case.

    • Reply
      afra
      August 28, 2017 at 6:53 am

      I pray you have a normal smooth and easy delivery <3

  • Reply
    Maggie
    August 26, 2017 at 12:09 am

    Great post! I didn’t have a c-section myself but I can’t even imagine how much longer recovery is. And you are a warrior mom. No matter which way our babies come out at the end of the day we’re all the same.

    • Reply
      afra
      August 28, 2017 at 6:53 am

      Thank you Maggie <3

  • Reply
    jhilmil
    August 26, 2017 at 1:12 am

    So true, people try to shame moms who had C-section, and this is so weird. A mum will always be a mum by her emotions and not by the method of birthing. I too had C-section and can vouch for all these things must for recovery.

    • Reply
      afra
      August 28, 2017 at 6:53 am

      Yes, people tend to say what do you mean birth? You mean surgery or delivery right? Ermm I still carried my baby for 41 weeks!

  • Reply
    Tara
    September 4, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    Great tips! I felt great a few days after my C-section and had to be reminded to rest! Your tips on resting and asking for help should be taken by any new mom!

  • Reply
    Sharon
    September 4, 2017 at 8:29 pm

    I’ve had one c after a lot of natural births. It was so awful but I’m thankful for the baby so it was worth it. But I hope never again. Great tips! I was so unprepared.

  • Reply
    My 52 Hour Long Birth Story - Through Mama's Eyes - Motherhood Blog
    September 8, 2017 at 5:08 pm

    […] 7 Things You Need To Know About C-section Recovery August 17, 2017 […]

  • Reply
    Demitra
    February 16, 2019 at 2:59 pm

    Great advice. I will be having my third c-section in July. My first two were emergencies due to having severe preeclampsia. They were also ten months apart! I wish i would’ve did more research then but now i’m a little less nervous to under go the third. The only hard part is my older two are now 9 and 10 and i’m older(35) so just wondering if it’ll take longer to recover.

    • Reply
      afra
      February 16, 2019 at 4:34 pm

      Hi Demitra, if it’s any help I am a few years older than you when I had my 3rd C-section 🙂 All I would say is rest as much as possible and don’t overwork yourself, don’t lift too much, don’t put too much pressure on your incision. Try using the C-Panty and it will help <3

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