The average stay in hospital after a c-section is about 2 nights however you can go home earlier if things are going well and some hospitals even have an enhanced recovery pathway which means that you could be discharged 24 hours after your birth.
Here are our tips on recovering after a Caesarean section!
1. Regular pain relief
Taking regular analgesia such as paracetamol and ibuprofen is a great way to help manage the pain. Generally, you will be discharged home with strong pain medications. The more comfortable you can be, the smoother your recovery.
2. Wear supportive, cotton underwear that sits above the incision to avoid aggravating the wound.
3. You can have a shower, wash your hair, and moisturise as you would do normally but avoid rubbing soap or creams onto the wound for the first few weeks until the incision has healed. This will minimise disruption to the healing process.
4. Gentle activities such as slow, short walks are beneficial in helping to reduce the risk of a blood clot forming in the calf muscles of the leg and aiding emotional wellbeing. The golden rule is to listen to your body and take it super easy.
5. Try breastfeeding positions that help take pressure off your tummy such as side-lying breastfeeding or the 'rugby hold'
6. Avoid constipation. Fluids and fibres are your friends as they help to soften stools and prevent straining which can put excess pressure on your abdominal muscles.
7. Give your body the rest it needs to recover. Try to prioritise your sleep (haha) as much as possible.
8. Avoid any heavy lifting for the first 6 weeks - only carry your baby.
9. Contact a midwife or doctor immediately if you experience; increased pain, bleeding, oozing of discharge, or an offensive smell from the wound, redness, or increased swelling. These can be signs of infection and it is important that you are seen as soon as possible.
10. Ask for help - you have gone through major surgery and are caring for a new baby. It's important that you are cared for too!