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The puerperium: recovering well after giving birth is key

Pregnancy and childbirth are a stressful test for the woman’s body. For this reason, after the birth of the baby, specialists recommend and guide a period of time, known as the puerperium, for the mother’s body to recover. It is fundamental.

It should be borne in mind that, in addition to the hormonal changes experienced by the woman’s body during pregnancy, the organs surrounding the uterus change their position to make room for the growing baby, and some functions are affected , for example, due to the pressure on the bladder or the little space left in the intestine (you can see in this video the changes in the mother’s body every month). And to that must be added the moment of birth. Childbirth, both vaginal and cesarean, is another moment that causes a significant impact on the woman’s body.

As we explain on the Ser Mamá website, from the Ribera health group, the puerperium (colloquially called quarantine) is the period immediately following childbirth and which extends as long as is considered necessary, although it generally ranges between 6 and 8 weeks, or 40 days as an average, for the mother’s body to return to pregestational conditions, at least in terms of anatomophysiological conditions.

Carmen Rodríguez, Supervisor of Delivery at the Hospital Universitari del Vinalopó, explains in the Un café a teva salut podcast, attached to this blog post, that this postpartum period is divided into three phases: the immediate one, the first 24 hours after childbirth Midwives place particular emphasis on the first two hours in the delivery room, an important time because breastfeeding is encouraged as the baby is very receptive; followed by the early puerperium, which spans between 24 hours and approximately the ninth day, where involutional changes occur and breastfeeding is established regularly and effectively; and the late puerperium, between the tenth day and 40-45 years after the baby’s birth, when this stage is considered complete.

What if. Mothers who have had a vaginal or caesarean birth go through these phases in the same way.

For Carmen Rodríguez, it is very important for women to be aware of the hormonal changes they undergo and that these can cause emotional effects. “The puerperium is the most forgotten part of childbirth, since it seems that, once she gives birth, everything is over for the mother, but that is not the case,” she says. The midwives and professionals at Obstetrícia, he says, “we know that it is a very sensitive period, in which the woman sometimes feels like crying and is very tired, but at the same time, it is key to the correct establishment of the mother-baby relationship”. assures For this reason, she encourages women to continue their relationship with midwives during this period and, if possible, attend postpartum groups to share their experiences and feelings with other mothers.

In this period of time, physical care is also necessary for the mother herself, although it depends on each woman and the development of the birth. In the case of vaginal births, it is important to keep the perineal area dry, change diapers often, eat a balanced diet, and always rest when the baby rests.

Listen to the puerperium podcast here, with advice from our professionals.

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