FOR WOMEN WHO HAVE GIVEN BIRTH Feelings about the birth The birth experience holds different meanings for different women. Physical changes after birth Often times it takes an additional 3 months for your body to recover from giving birth. Often called the “fourth trimester” Helpful hints after a vaginal birth Getting on your feet soon after birth is helpful for a quicker recovery of energy. Recovery after a cesarean birth A cesarean birth is major abdominal surgery. You should be on your feet within a day. This will help to prevent complications that could arise following surgery.
FOR WOMEN WHO HAVE ADOPTED Exhaustion, isolation, adapting to a new baby – are some of thesame issues as those of women who have given birth, but women whoadopt also face challenging issues such as, logistical, emotional andfinancial issues.
BREAST-FEEDING YOUR BABY A good start – rooming in Infants who breast-feed in the first hour of life are more successful long-term breast feeders. Keeping your baby with you 24 hours a day will also help promote successful breast-feeding. What to expect the first few days Colostrums is the liquid in the mothers breast before the milk production and is full of antibodies and very beneficial in protecting the newborn against infections. Supply & Demand-the more frequently your breast are emptied, the more milk you will make. Proper latching on and positioning will result in successful feedings. Breast-feeding challenges Baby cannot latch Sore nipples Inverted nipples Sore breasts Engorgement Breast-feeding in public Returning to work
Breast- feeding under special circumstances If you choose to breast-feed your adopted baby, contact a lactation consultant for expert advice.Reasons not to breast-feed •HIV + status in Mother •Illegal drug use by Mother •Active untreated maternal tuberculosis •Infant with Glactosemia (metabolic deficiency) •Some maternal medications
THE HEALTH & WELL-BEING OF MOTHERS Caring for a newborn often takes all of our physical and emotional energy, each of us for our own sake and the sake of our children should do our best to attend to our own basic needs. These include nutritious food, exercise, rest and sleep. And contact with others. Learning how to mother your baby – Mothering is a learned role. Fatigue – It is very important to sleep whenever the baby sleeps. Stress – Take your baby along for a walk using an infant stroller helps to reduce stress. Partnership – Communication is important for a successful relationship. Sexuality – Low sexual interest can be the result of lifestyle changes. Lifestyle changes – Making contact with other Mothers is very important. Returning to work – It is normal to have feelings of relief and grief or both when returning to work.
THOUGHTS & FEELINGS80% of women who give birth will experience some ups and downs in moods within the first few weeks after giving birth, often referred to as the “Baby Blues”.10-15% of women will have a more severe case of this and will not go away as quickly and this is known as “Postpartum Depression” or “Postpartum Anxiety”.Postpartum Psychosis is a severe form of this in which women feel disconnected from reality and the people around us.
Physical, Psychological & Social Risk FactorsThe following factors make it more likely that some of us will have more difficulties in the postpartum period: Housing problems History of PMS or difficult menstrual Current domestic violence cycles Financial problems History of abuse (physical, sexual, Postpartum pain emotional) Fatigue History of depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder Lack of support Previous history of postpartum problems Social isolation and loneliness History of infertility, abortion, miscarriage Thyroid problems or stillbirth Premature or sick baby Recent loss through death or moving Challenging baby Negative or traumatic birth experience Breast-feeding problems Relationship problems Poor nutrition Ill partner of family member
Common Postpartum Emotional ProblemsPostpartum difficulties can sometimes be prevented and often minimized, and are definitely treatable. If you believe your may be at risk for postpartum depression, Trust your intuition about how you are discuss it with your health care feeling. provider. One woman’s blues may be another woman’s depression Err on the side of caution if you are concerned about how you are feeling. If someone tries to brush you aside, find someone who will take you seriously Be persistent in seeking experienced professional care You may feel ashamed, but remember these are medical problems that are Additional resources: common, treatable and not your fault Postpartum.net or You deserve to feel the best you can depressionafterdelivery.c om
Treatment Treatment may include counseling, medication and support groups. Some medications are safe to take while breast-feeding. Most often hospitalization and medication is necessary for postpartum psychosis and severe postpartum depression. Unfortunately temporary separation of mother and baby is necessary
Quote“Many of us are encouraged to planonly for birth or adoption and are notadequately prepared for the many life changes that come with a new baby.Perhaps the most important thing youcan do to prepare for your needs is to build up you support network in advance”.
DISCUSSION QUESTIONThe inappropriate promotion of infant formula by corporations continues to undermine informed choices about breast-feeding among women worldwide. Do you think it is a reasonable practice for healthcare providers to remove formula samples provided by these corporations and given to patients, usually at baby’s first appointment, in order to promote breast-feeding?