As magical as the process of giving birth is, the period after your delivery could be hectic, especially when you are surrounded by people who would feed you with myths and superstitions instead of love and affection for you and your baby. Today, let us bust together some of the most common myths about postpartum care.
Myth #1: The woman should not drink a lot of water after delivery
This is absolutely a myth. The water intake is crucial for new mothers and it is important that they stay well hydrated. A minimum of 3-4 liters of water is required for their bodies to function well and give their best towards taking care of their baby. In case one drinks less water, it could be hazardous as it may lead to the formation of blood clots in your body. New mothers tend to sweat a lot, and they are also making milk. It is therefore even more important for them to stay hydrated.
Myth #2: What to eat and what to avoid?
There are several myths around this specific topic. Basically, your nutrition habits during your pregnancy must also follow in the postpartum period. A well-balanced and nutritious diet would do wonders for you. You just need to make sure that the food is not too spicy or pungent . To ensure proper lactation and breastfeeding, new mothers should consume 400-500 more calories than the regular amount. These should be consumed in the form of healthy calories, and not excessive fat. Ghee, when consumed in moderation, is a good source of healthy calories.
It is also important that you have fresh home-cooked meals which consist of lots of vegetables. You must also have a lot of fruits during this time.
Do take Iron, Calcium and Protein supplements as advised by your doctor.
Myth #3: The more milk you consume, the better will be your breastfeeding experience
Of course milk is a wholesome source of fat and protein, but it must be taken in moderation. About 150 ml of milk twice a day should suffice.
Myth #4: Don’t breastfeed if you are sick
This is another myth. Most of the time, it is absolutely okay to feed the baby when you are sick as there is no possibility of you transmitting your infection to your baby through breastfeeding. If you are absolutely unable to breastfeed, do not do it and get yourself tested.
Myth #5: Breastfeeding comes naturally
Many believe that because breastfeeding is a natural process it will come naturally to new moms and their babies. The truth is, many women struggle with learning how to breastfeed their baby. There are fast let downs, low milk supply, shallow nipples and it takes time to find what works for you and your baby.
Myth #6: The baby bump disappears immediately after childbirth
After delivery, the uterus is still fairly large. The muscles and skin have expanded. So the bump will also not disappear immediately. It will take from a few weeks to a few months for the baby bump to go away if you are making efforts to get back into shape, which anyhow is not very easy when you are trying to adjust to a new schedule.
Myth #7: Everyone gets postpartum depression
Mostly, only a small percentage of new mothers get postpartum depression. This myth is proliferating because people confuse postpartum depression with postpartum blues, which is completely different. Postpartum blues are associated with the emotions of feeling empathy, changes in mood and a little stress. These are usually overcome naturally by women. If these emotions are prolonged, they could lead to depression.
Myth #8: Breastfeeding mothers cannot get pregnant
You can get pregnant while you’re breastfeeding, but moms who breastfeed exclusively tend to experience a delay in the return of their fertility (known as lactational amenorrhoea).
- Drink adequate amount of water: You must drink around 3-4 liters of water to stay hydrated.
- Make sure you get enough sleep. To deal with exhaustion and fatigue, get 8 to 10 hrs of sleep everyday. Your infant may need to be fed every two to three hours.
- Sleep when your baby naps to ensure you’re receiving adequate rest.
- Seek assistance. Do not be hesitant to accept aid from family and friends during and after the postpartum time. Your body requires relaxation and practical assistance around the house can help you achieve that rest.
- Friends or family members can help make meals, conduct errands, or look after the other kids in the house.
- Consume nutritious foods. Maintain a nutritious diet to aid with recovery. Incorporate more whole grains, veggies, fruits, and protein into your diet. You should also drink more water, especially if you’re breastfeeding.
- Exercise: When it’s safe to exercise, your doctor will tell you. It should not be a strenuous exercise. Take a tour around your neighborhood. A change of location is energizing and might help you feel more energized.
When to see your Doctor?
Women might suffer from a variety of postpartum issues, some of which are more significant than others and each with its own set of symptoms. The following are some of the most common issues for which it is advisable to seek medical help.
- Fever after childbirth
- Infections after childbirth (including uterine, bladder, or episiotomy infections)
- After delivery, there is a lot of blood loss.
- Perineal pain (between the vagina and the rectum) and discharge from episiotomy wound or C Section wound.
- Lactation issues like – Swollen breasts, infection, plugged ducts and sore nipples.
- Constipation and hemorrhoids
- Incontinence, either urinary or fecal (stool)
- Hair loss is a common problem.
- Depression after childbirth
- Discomfort during sex
- Severe low back ache.
Here at Ovum hospital, our team of experts right from the doctors to dietitian and physiotherapist are more than willing to provide the necessary assistance and give the much needed tender loving care in dealing with the above mentioned postpartum problems.