Posts Tagged ‘body changes’

Postpartum care: What you need to know about the new guidelines

Thursday, August 16th, 2018

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recently released new guidelines calling for changes to improve the postpartum care women receive after giving birth. Postpartum care is important because new moms are at risk of serious and sometimes life-threatening health complications in the days and weeks after giving birth. Too many new moms suffer or die from causes that could have been prevented.

How have ACOG’s postpartum care guidelines changed?

In the past, ACOG recommended that most women have a postpartum checkup 4 to 6 weeks after giving birth. A postpartum checkup is a medical checkup you get after having a baby to make sure you’re recovering well from labor and birth. ACOG now says that postpartum care should be an ongoing process, rather than a one-time checkup. Your postpartum care should meet your personal needs so that you get the best medical care and support. Seeing your health care provider sooner and more often can help prevent serious health complications.

ACOG recommends that all women should:

  • Have contact with their health care provider within 3 weeks of giving birth
  • Get ongoing medical care during the postpartum period, as needed
  • Have a complete postpartum checkup no later than 12 weeks after giving birth

How can you get ready for postpartum care?

Make a postpartum care plan with your provider. Don’t wait until after you have your baby — make your plan while you’re pregnant at one of your prenatal care checkups. To make your plan, talk to your provider about:

Learn more about postpartum care at marchofdimes.org.

Warning signs to look for after having a baby

Thursday, May 10th, 2018

Your body worked hard during pregnancy, helping to keep your baby healthy and safe. But your body also changes after having a baby. While some changes are normal and help you recover from pregnancy, others may be a sign that something may not be right. Seeking medical care is the best thing you can do if you have any of the following warning signs or symptoms:

  • Heavy bleeding (more than your normal period or gets worse)
  • Discharge, pain or redness that doesn’t go away or gets worse. These could be a sign of infection in your c-section incision or if you had an episiotomy.
  • Intense feelings of sadness and worry that last a long time after birth. These could be a sign of postpartum depression (also called PPD). PPD is a kind of depression that some women get after having a baby.
  • Fever higher than 100.4F
  • Pain or burning when you go the bathroom
  • Pain, swelling and tenderness in your legs, especially around your calves. These could be a sign of deep vein thrombophlebitis (also called DVT), a kind of blood clot.
  • Red streaks on your breasts or painful lumps in your breasts. These could be a sign of mastitis, a breast infection.
  • Severe pain in your lower belly, feeling sick to your stomach or vomiting
  • Vaginal discharge that smells bad
  • Severe headaches that won’t go away
  • Vision changes

Call your health care provider or dial 911 right away if you have any of these signs or symptoms:

  • Bleeding that can’t be controlled
  • Chest pain
  • Trouble breathing
  • Signs of shock, such as chills, clammy skin, dizziness, fainting or a racing heart
  • Seeing spots

If you feel like something is wrong, call your provider. It is important to get help so that you can enjoy being with your new baby.

For more information