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How To Care After Pregnancy

Care after pregnancy is a must, whether you give birth at home or at the hospital. Traditionally, women are advised to stay at home after delivery to let their body heal. However, today's working women cannot afford to rest for a long time, yet, you should take it easy for at least six weeks after giving birth.

Why Care After Pregnancy?

Postpartum care leads to:

  • Early detection and treatment of maternal infection or hemorrhage.
  • Early detection of infection and other disorders in your baby.
  • Counseling on family planning.
  • Knowledge about breastfeeding, nutrition, childcare, and other things important for a mother.

Tests For Your Baby

Before you can take your baby home, there are tests performed on her for around 30 disorders. The commonest ones are Congenital Hypothyroidisim, Phenylketonuria (PKU), Galactosemia, Homocystinuria, Maple Syrup Urine Disease, Biotinidase, Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia, Sickle Cell Disease, and Cystic Fibrosis.

Care For Umbilical Cord

After your baby comes out, the umbilical cord, which transported nourishment to your baby during pregnancy, turns into a purplish-blue stub, about half or one inch in length. It takes about 2 weeks, in some cases up to 8 weeks, for the sub to dry and fall off. However, you need to care for this stub to prevent infection as well as irritation.

  • Keep the area dry and clean.
  • Give only sponge baths to your baby until the cord falls off.
  • Do not try to pull or pick at the cord to remove it, even if it seems to be hanging just by a thread. Let it fall off naturally.

If you notice that.

  • The cord base seems to swell or redden and bleed continuously
  • The cord discharges white or yellowish pus and is foul-smelling
  • The cord appears to be painful to your baby

.call your doctor fast. There might be an infection!

"Baby Blues"

About 50 to 75 per cent of new moms suffer from mood swings or negative emotions after delivery. This happens within 4-5 days after giving birth.

The symptoms are:

  • Irritability and impatience
  • Restlessness and anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Fatigue
  • Crying without reason
  • Sadness
  • Poor concentration
  • Mood changes

Although the precise reason for "baby blues" is not known yet, the hormone changes occurring during and after pregnancy are believed to be the culprit. The changing hormone chemistry stimulates a chemical reaction in the brain leading to depression.

"Baby blues" may last for a few hours every day for a week or two. Normally, it vanishes within 10 days of delivery. If it prolongs for months together, then you should consult a doctor.

Ways to reduce the symptoms of "baby blues" are:

  • Talk to people around.
  • Do not remain secluded.
  • Listen to your favorite music while performing chores.
  • Whenever you get time, indulge in activities that interest you.
  • As soon as any negative thought pops into your mind, replace it with some pleasant memory or thought.
  • Smile!

Care after pregnancy leads to happy and healthy mom and baby!