Mummy and Me Magazine August 2014 September 2014 - Page 9

Pregnancy What to Expect after Expecting... R ae, one of our consultant Midwives gives great information and advice on ‘What to expect after expecting’... So your baby is finally here but what happens next? Midwives perform an assessment of Mum each time we visit so here is what’s normal and what’s to worry about. All mums will lose some blood after their baby is born this is normal and called Lochia. It is like having a heavy period for around four weeks. Lochia should be like your period in most ways other than the initial heaviness and length of time. You should contact your GP if you have clots in the blood or if it has a foul smell. Going to the loo after having a baby can seem like a scary task at first but most mums find that they go naturally and it is comfortable. It is important that you do your pelvic floor exercises to maintain good bladder and bowel function. If you find you have difficulty controlling going to the toilet speak to your midwife or GP who can offer support and referral for physiotherapy. WHAT TO EXPECT AFTER EXPECTING How are you? One of the most simple yet extremely important questions you will be asked. Postnatal depression affects approximately 1 in 10 women. Most Mums will have a bout of baby blues a few days after their baby is born as their hormones settle and they adjust to their new baby. This usually resolves as swiftly as it appears. If this is not the case then speak with your midwife or GP as you may need some additional support. It is possible you may have a tear or cut (episiotomy) if you have a vaginal birth. Maintaining good hygiene is of great importance. Change your sanitary pad regularly and wash your hands before you do so. Your midwife will offer to check your wound to make sure it is healing and there is no sign of infection, any stitches will be dissolvable and will not need removing. If you have had a caesarean section your midwife will care for this wound too including removing any stitches/staples where necessary. Some mums will still have swollen ankles immediately after birth and this normally settles down pretty quickly. However if you notice any abnormal swelling in one leg, soreness, redness, bruising or heat then seek medical advice as these are signs of a blood clot. Pay particular attention to this post caesarean section and try to wear your hospital tights for as long as you can. | 9