Every woman looks forward to that moment when she will experience the joy of her child / children growing within her, what most do not expect is the reality of what happens to a woman’s body after bringing a child into the world.
For some, they simply accept the changes that pregnancy and childbirth have made to their body as they work to return it to its former state. For others, they deal with bodily problems unable to accept that such a transformation could have happened in their previously “perfect” body.
Regardless of which group you belong to or eventually belong to, it is important to remember that pregnancy is a beautiful thing. Your body may go through some changes, but it is something you can handle. Knowing what to expect ahead of time will put you at ease knowing that no permanent damage has occurred and you will enjoy motherhood while working on your snapback.
Here are some things you might have questions about when you give birth for the first time.
Changes every woman should expect after childbirth
1. Why do you still look pregnant?
For the next few weeks or months after delivery, your tummy will still look like you are pregnant. Even after the uterus contracts, it takes a while for the abdominal muscles that were stretched during pregnancy to return to normal and, for some women, never does. This means that you have to work on some abdominal exercises to re-flatten it.
2. How much weight will you lose after giving birth?
Most women are expected to gain weight during pregnancy, but once they deliver, they lose between 11 and 12 pounds, depending on the size of their baby. You may not get back to your pre-pregnancy weight for a while, but that’s okay. Over time, your body will lose all the extra fluids it retained during pregnancy and also the extra blood. You will notice that you will sweat much more during the first week of labor, do not worry. This is just your body getting rid of the extra water that is still in your system.
3. Why don’t you know when you want to urinate?
Labor and delivery often affect the bladder and cause swelling and loss of sensation. This will fade over time, but while it is difficult for you to feel the urge to urinate, be sure to try and relax at intervals so you don’t get to the point where you can’t suppress it. Also, tell your doctors about this so they can give you the care you need.
4. When will your vagina return to normal?
If you give birth vaginally, your vagina may never return to its original state. Immediately after birth, you may lose muscle tone in your vagina, but it should gradually regain its tone. Exercising like Kegel will help you tone your muscles faster.
5. Why are you losing your hair?
During pregnancy, you have higher estrogen levels which lead to more hair growth and less hair loss, but after delivery, your estrogen levels drop. That is why for a while you will notice that your hair falls out, but there is nothing to worry about. After a few months, your hair growth should return to normal.
6. Why does your skin break?
For most women, pregnancy triggers flare-ups due to high hormone levels. These breakouts will fade over time once you lie down. On the other hand, if you have very fair skin during pregnancy, labor can trigger an outbreak for you, but give it a few months and it will clear up.