July is Post-Partum Changes Awareness Month!

Welcoming a new baby is a joyous and transformative experience, but it also brings many changes to a mother’s body and mind. Recognizing and understanding these post-partum changes is crucial for a healthy recovery. July is Post-Partum Changes Awareness Month, a time dedicated to raising awareness and providing support for new mothers. Here are 5 essential tips to help you navigate this important phase of life:

  1. Embrace Physical Changes: After childbirth, your body undergoes numerous changes as it recovers. You might experience:
    1. Bleeding and Discharge: Known as lochia, this can last for several weeks.
    2. Sore Breasts: Due to milk production and breastfeeding.
    3. Abdominal Changes: Your belly might feel loose, and you may have a C-section scar or stretch marks.
    4. Pelvic Floor Changes: Especially if you have had a vaginal birth, there may be temporary weakness of the pelvic floor muscles resulting in reduced support for the bladder, uterus, and bowel, and control over bladder and bowel function. There may be swelling, bruising, and soreness in the pelvic floor area.
  • Tip: Be patient with your body and allow time for natural healing in the immediate days following childbirth. Start gentle exercises, including pelvic floor exercises, as soon as comfortable. Ensure proper hydration and wear comfortable clothing to help ease discomfort. Consult your healthcare provider if you have any concerns, especially pelvic floor changes, to discuss treatment strategies.
  1. Prioritize Mental Health: Post-partum blues are common, affecting up to 80% of new mothers. However, if you feel persistently sad, anxious, or overwhelmed, you might be experiencing post-partum depression (PPD).
  • Tip: Talk about your feelings with your partner, family, or friends. Don’t hesitate to seek professional help if you need it. Therapy and support groups can be very beneficial.
  1. Establish a Support Network: Caring for a newborn can be exhausting, and having a support system is vital. This can include your partner, family, friends, or even professional help like a doula.
  • Tip: Don’t be afraid to ask for help with chores, meals, or baby care. Sharing responsibilities can give you much-needed rest and recovery time.
  1. Focus on Nutrition: Proper nutrition is essential for your recovery and for breastfeeding if you choose to do so. Your body needs extra nutrients to heal and produce milk.
  • Tip: Incorporate a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Sometimes, taking a prenatal vitamin can continue to be beneficial post-partum.
  1. Monitor Post-Partum Health: Regular check-ups with your healthcare provider are crucial during the post-partum period. They will monitor your physical and mental health and address any complications that may arise.
  • Tip: Schedule your post-partum visits and attend them. Keep a list of any questions or symptoms you want to discuss with your doctor.

Additional Resources and Support:
Here are some helpful resources and contacts:

  • Post-Partum Support International (PSI): Provides support, information, and resources for mothers experiencing post-partum depression and anxiety.
  • Local Support Groups: Many communities offer support groups for new mothers. Check with your healthcare provider or local community center for recommendations.
  • Hotlines: There are various hotlines available for immediate support, including mental health helplines and breastfeeding support lines.

July’s Post-Partum Changes Awareness Month serves as a reminder that the journey of motherhood continues beyond childbirth. By understanding and addressing the physical and emotional changes that occur post-partum, you can ensure a healthier and happier transition into this new chapter of life. Remember, it’s okay to seek help and take time for yourself—self-care is an essential part of being the best mom you can be.


Want to Know More About Your Pelvic Floor Health?

Visit YourPelvicFloor.org for all the information you need! This dedicated website offers a wide selection of health topics, publications, patient leaflets, personal stories, events, and other resources, all available for free in more than 25 languages. Both patients and practitioners have reviewed the information to ensure it’s accurate and easy to understand.