Giving birth is an intense process. Pushing out a baby is hard work, and it’s common for women to have back, hip, shoulder, or neck pain. Also, holding newborns (especially for long periods of time) can feel awkward and create muscle strain. Sometimes mothers do not move for a long time when their babies are […]
Healing & Recovery
It takes months to grow a baby and it takes months to physically recover and heal. Pregnancy, labor, and delivery recovery is a lot of work for a body! Women’s health and wellness always matters, and is especially important now. In a culture in which attention is often focused on the new baby, mothers’ needs can be overlooked. Many women are caught off guard by their postpartum bodies and do not understand what is happening. Instead of confusion or worry, they deserve to be prepared and supported!
The information in this section answers common questions women have as they move through the recovery journey in partnership with their care team.
Not all pregnancies and births go as hoped. Some women have birth experiences that are very upsetting and traumatic. These experiences usually don’t just “go away.” Women need the chance to talk about them and to heal physically and emotionally.
Processing feelings and taking care of yourself is important. It is ok to not be ok all the time. Resources are available and can help. Ask for what you need. Women are strong and resilient. And mothers also benefit from help and support.
Topics in Healing & Recovery
Below, you can view the new parent health information one-pager, along with an overview for ideas to introduce and use the tool in practice. These are helpful for clinics to distribute at discharge or during postpartum visits.
Bleeding after birth, (often called lochia), is a normal part of recovery. Quarter-sized blood clots are common the first few days. At 10-14 days after birth, many women notice a brief increase in bleeding. That’s thought to be scab over the place where the placenta was attached to the uterus coming off. Most moms have […]
SnapBack photos make it look a woman can have a baby and leave the hospital in her pre-baby jeans. In reality, it takes weeks just for a woman’s uterus to shrink back to its original size. A woman’s breast size can also change significantly, and it may take time to pee out extra fluid your […]
Your recovering body may be more vulnerable than usual to certain infections after you have a baby. Some postpartum infections actually begin during labor, though they often don’t become apparent for days – or even weeks – after delivery. Common infections include urinary tract, uterus (endometritis), breasts (mastitis), and problems around incisions such as following […]
Maternal Health Warning Signs video reel series with Nurse Nikki Video part 1: When to call 911 – maternal health warning signs that are urgent and considered a medical emergency. Video part 2: When to call your provider – maternal health warnings signs where you need to contact and connect with a health care team member and address with […]
Substance misuse among pregnant people and new parents is a growing problem. There has been a big increase in opioid caused deaths among women. As women recover from childbirth, whether the delivery was vaginal or c-section, it is not uncommon to have pain. Women are often given opioids (strong pain killers) in the hospital and a […]
Navigating postpartum recovery and transitioning to new parenthood. We have created a Care Plan for care team members and birthing parents to customize and tailor recovery. < Resources
Traditionally, the postpartum visit takes place 6-8 weeks after the birth of a baby. Given all that happens to women’s bodies in the early weeks after giving birth, many women find that visit to be too little and too late. There are also many women who never receive a postpartum visit! The American College of […]
Navigating postpartum recovery and transitioning to new parenthood. We have created a checklist and guidance for new mothers to create their own postpartum plans. During labor and delivery, mothers typically have their plans in place to address what they need to feel safe and supported during childbirth. Once the baby is born, however, the mother […]
A c-section is major abdominal surgery and it will take time to recover. A number of nerves are cut during the procedure, and it can take up to six months for all of the nerves in the abdominal area to heal completely. Some women continue to experience numbness, tingling and odd shooting pains around their […]
Birthing a baby vaginally is not easy. Perineal pain due to episiotomy, tears, stitches, or just the stretching of vagina during birth is very common. If you had a tear and stitches, it can be especially painful for the first week or two. Fortunately, vaginal tissue has a great blood supply and will generally heal quickly. […]
This is easier said than done but oh so important for new moms and parents! There are several reasons for the extreme fatigue following the birth of a baby. Women do not sleep well late in pregnancy and are further exhausted by the physical work of labor. Excitement and a lot of visitors add to […]
Postpartum Recovery Booklet on a variety of health and self-care topics