A guide to recovering from a c-section – With the arrival of a baby, caesarean sections are often overlooked for the major surgeries that they are. With 1 in 4 pregnant women delivering via c-section in the UK, they are often considered a routine procedure, however, they are also often performed in an emergency. Regardless of whether your c-section was planned or not, the recovery process can be lengthy and needs to be taken seriously to ensure as smooth a recovery as possible.
The most common advice given to those recovering from a c-section is to be patient and take things easy. This advice is given for a reason; although it can be challenging with a newborn to look after it is really important to not overdo things too early as this can cause further damage.
Accept the help of professionals and family and friends where possible to allow yourself to focus solely on recovery and caring for your baby.
It is advised to take pain relief for at least 7 to 10 days after a c-section, however, this will vary from person to person. Medical professionals will be able to advise you on what pain relief to take and the correct dosage to ensure your baby isn’t affected if you are breastfeeding.
Make sure that you are vigilant with taking your pain relief on time and as often as required, even if you aren’t in pain in the moment.
Likely to take about 6 weeks to heal, it is crucial that you tend to your wound carefully. You will need to check and clean your wound on a daily basis to prevent infection. Wearing loose clothing is also advised to ensure that you aren’t causing additional irritation to the wound.
Whilst you are still in the hospital, ask a medical professional whom you are comfortable with to check on your wound for you. Unfortunately, medical negligence claims are sometimes made if c-sections have not been performed to an adequate standard so it is vital that you get your wound checked regularly to begin with.
Post-birth recovery can be very daunting, especially if you’re a first-time mum. It is really important that if you are struggling or have a question then you speak up and ask your midwife or doctor for advice. It is their job to help you, not just during birth but throughout the recovery process too so don’t be afraid to ask them anything, no matter how silly it may seem to you.
Be kind to yourself
Recovering from a c-section can be a very frustrating time. With lots of things to do as a mum to a newborn, it is easy to get angry with yourself that you’re not able to do everything you’d like straight away. It is easier said than done, but it really is essential to cut yourself some slack; you’ve just been through major surgery which is going to take time to recover from. Being kinder to yourself will make the recovery process slightly easier and mean as a result you’ll be a happier mum with a happier baby.