Physical Care

The body will undergo many changes after delivery of the baby.

The uterus will go from the size of a baby back to the normal size in about 6 weeks. That can cause a lot of cramping. When the baby is breastfeeding there is a hormone released to help accomplish this change. That is why the cramps are often worse while breast feeding. Ibuprofen, also called Motrin, is the best medication for these types of cramps.

The bleeding will slow down and then change to what we call lochia. Lochia is a combination of uterine blood and discharge that can last about a month after delivery. It is usually light and may come and go over time.

The vagina will need to heal from the delivery as well. Ice can be very soothing. Medications such as witch hazel and tucks pads can be helpful. Soaking in warm water can also help.

The breasts also undergo a lot of changes after delivery as the milk comes in. The nipples can become sore or cracked, lanolin cream is the best cream for this. If you are having trouble getting the baby to latch on or other issues with breast feeding, ask for a lactation consultant. Most hospitals have a person that has been trained to help with breast feeding, they are called lactation consultants.