What You Need To Know About Post-Partum Bleeding

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For first time moms, you might be wondering what post-partum bleeding is and it might sound mortifying. However, there’s nothing to be scared or worried about. In fact, it is perfectly normal. Post-partum bleeding is when a woman bleeds after delivering her baby. It is usually heavier than your normal period.

During pregnancy, your blood rises to around 50%, which means your body is quite prepared for all this blood loss. Just after birth, the placenta separates from the uterus, where open blood vessels are present, which was attached. They then start to bleed in the uterus which causes post-partum bleeding. Vaginal tearing during normal delivery can also be another cause of post-partum bleeding. The blood discharge that women experience after giving birth is called lochia.

“Other potential causes might have to do with the rise in C-sections, which can lead to complications like hemorrhages and blood clots, and scheduled inductions, which are also associated with higher rates of postpartum hemorrhage, even in low risk patient,” writes Vanessa LoBue Ph.D.

During lochia, ensure that you only use heavy sanitary towels and not tampons. Tampons can lead to infections.

How Long Does Lochia Last and What Color is it?

 

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Lochia usually lasts around four to six weeks. It differs from woman to woman. You also usually bleed heavily between three to ten days. The color of the blood is usually bright red, then it turns to pink, then to brown and towards the end a yellowish white color. A mild fever might also occur after giving birth, this is also perfectly normal.

When to Worry or When You Should Consult Your Doctor?

 

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If you notice any of these signs, please consult your doctor immediately:

  • Fevers and chills: even though a slight or mild fever after giving birth is normal; it’s best to consult your doctor and play it safe.
  • Extreme and heavy bleeding: ss mentioned above, lochia is heavier than your regular period, but if you find yourself having to change your sanitary pad at least every hour, then you should take the next step and consult your doctor. Even if you have large clots of blood, it’s better to consult your doctor.
  • If your blood is still bright red after four days or more.
  • It pains or burns while urinating. This is never a good sign and you should seek treatment immediately.
  • You’re feeling depressed and in despair. Some moms suffer from post-partum depression. Some might even have delusions of harming themselves or their baby. If this happens, then consult your doctor immediately. They can assess you and give you the necessary treatment. It is normal to feel a little depressed and upset occasionally after giving birth, as taking care of an infant can be quite stressful. However, if you find yourself to be constantly stressed out and the depression is lasting over a week, then seek medical assistance immediately.
  • Your discharge has a foul smell.
  • You are suffering from severe and extreme pain in your abdomen, pelvis, or vagina. Or any pains after giving birth.
  • You feel nauseous or you’re vomiting.
  • You suffer from severe and long-lasting headaches. You have pain in your breasts. Although, this is also normal, if you are finding this pain to be quite severe and if not’s relieved by nursing or warm soaks, then you should consult your doctor. Some women might even experience flu-like symptoms.

“Every doctor must weigh the relative costs and benefits of treatment,” writes Joel L. Young M.D.

Some Foods That You Should Include in Your Diet: 

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The following foods are not only good for your health but also good to include in your diet after giving birth and it will also relieve post-partum bleeding:

  • Wild caught salmon: it’s good to eat during pregnancy and after giving birth too. It also has benefits for both mom and baby.
  • Soaked oatmeal: keeps you fit and regular after giving birth and also helps with increasing your milk supply.
  • Coconut oil: it contains healthy fatty acids and it is anti-fungal and anti-bacterial.
  • Eggs: this is very nutritious and is also beneficial for the baby

“We should encourage pregnant women to listen to their bodies, mindfully eat foods that their bodies crave, and try to nourish their bodies during this most vulnerable time of life,” writes Alexis Conason Psy.D.

 

How to Deal with Postpartum Depression

How to Deal with Postpartum Depression

 

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Postpartum depression is a type of depression that some mothers might experience after the birth of their new baby. If you suspect that you might be suffering from postpartum depression, then it’s time to take the next step and treat it immediately. Some moms might feel as though they don’t need the depression chat room. However, treating postpartum depression is necessary for both mom and baby.

“Postpartum depression is said to affect about one in every eight mothers,” says Jared Friedman, MA. “It is a real, clinical form of depression and requires treatment and attention just like any other mental illness.”

After giving birth, a mom usually experiences a mixture of emotions from joy to anxiety. Moms of newborns usually feel stressed, exhausted, and overwhelmed. However, if these emotions have become too powerful and you’re feeling as though you’re never going to be a good mom or you just can’t do it, then you’re most likely suffering from depression. Often at times, postpartum baby blues are confused with postpartum depression. Postpartum baby blues usually occur after 2-3days after birth and they can last for up to 2 weeks. Postpartum depression is more severe and lasts much longer.

“They are able to function in their roles but have significant anxiety and mood symptoms that rob them of the joy of being a mother and interfere with their ability to develop good attachment and bonding with their infants,” says Samantha Meltzer-Brody, MD, MPH.

Why Does Postpartum Depression Occur?

 

Hormones:

Your hormones increase during pregnancy and then suddenly drop after giving birth. This triggers postpartum depression.

Genetics:

Depression can be genetic and if anyone else in the family has suffered with it, then there’s a possibility that you will too.

Other Stress and Problems:

Problems between you and your partner or other family members can trigger postpartum depression. Sometimes your family or partner may not be there to offer their support or you might have financial issues, these factors lead to postpartum depression. If you’ve had an alcohol or drug addiction problem, then you’re also at risk for postpartum depression.

Problems During Pregnancy:

Whether it was complications with your pregnancy or other issues in your life that you were faced with during pregnancy. These factors also increase the risk of postpartum depression.

Symptoms of Postpartum Depression

“Postpartum symptoms usually develop within the first few weeks after giving birth, but may begin later — up to six months after birth,” says John M. Grohol, PsyD.

 

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  • Severe depression and mood swings.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Lack of interest in things you once enjoyed such as sex, or any activities that you previously enjoyed.
  • Thoughts about harming your baby or even yourself.
  • Crying excessively.
  • Not being able to bond with your baby.
  • Either difficulty with falling asleep or sleeping too much.
  • Fear of not being a good mother.
  • Anxiety or panic attacks.
  • The inability to concentrate.
  • Feelings of worthlessness.
  • Fatigue and lack of energy.
  • Suicidal thoughts.

Why Does Postpartum Depression Require Immediate Treatment?

If postpartum depression is left untreated, it can lead to other major issues, not just in the mother’s life, but the fathers and baby are too. The mother is at risk of chronic depression or episodes of depression. Due to the mother’s depression, the father is also at risk of depression and it could strain your marriage. Your child is also at risk of emotional and behavioral disorders. They are also at risk of suffering from eating and sleeping problems. Along with delays in their development.

Treatment Options for Postpartum Depression

 

Consult Your Doctor or Primary Health Caregiver:

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A health professional needs to diagnose you. They can also do a thorough examination of you and advise you on the best way to move forward and how to treat it.

Therapy and Counseling:

By talking to either a psychologist, psychiatrist or a therapist, it could help you solve any problems that you are faced. They will also help you with managing your emotions and understanding it.

Medications:

Antidepressants can help with treating postpartum depression. These medications help with balancing the chemicals in the brain. Ensure that you notify your psychiatrist if you’re breastfeeding so that they can prescribe medications that are safe for breastfeeding.

Live a Healthy Lifestyle:

Eat healthy foods, exercise regularly and get enough sleep. These can help with treating postpartum depression. If it is difficult to get a good night’s sleep with your baby, then try and take naps during the day.

References: WebMD

Mayo Clinic