How to recover from pregnancy
Throughout your pregnancy, you make sure you’re eating the right foods, drinking plenty of fluids and resting to ensure your baby is born healthy and happy. After delivery, you may think to yourself: “Ah, it’s finally over!” However, this is the beginning of a new chapter where your health is of utmost importance. So, how do you take care of yourself after giving birth?
Freeze meals and plan snacks
Before baby arrives, cook some meals and store them in your freezer. It’ll be easier to eat healthy post-delivery if you have a stock of wholesome meals which you can pop into a microwave for minutes and eat. Choose simple, healthy snacks like almonds, plain chicken and yogurt rather than the bad stuff. We know, it may be tempting to grab some chips or chocolate after months of healthy eating, but it’s not a good idea. Consult your doctor on calorie intake based on your weight, activity level and if you choose to nurse as you may need to increase it for some time.
It’s important to replenish your body and make up for lost fluids after delivery. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water. Whether you’re breastfeeding or not, experts recommend drinking around 8-10 glasses of water a day depending on your size.
If you can’t sleep, be sure to rest
It may be difficult, but getting plenty of rest after you come home from the hospital is crucial. The old adage “sleep when baby sleeps” might be difficult to follow, but at least make sure you relax with your eyes closed while baby sleeps.
Try moderate exercise
Getting back to your pre-pregnancy body is no easy task; we know celebrities do it overnight, but they have their resources. Upon leaving the hospital, you’ll still look pregnant, but don’t worry. Follow a diet and exercise regime with your doctor and you’ll be back in shape in no time. You’ll need to be very cautious with movement and avoid driving for the first two weeks, plus heavy lifting (anything over 15 pounds) for the first six weeks. Regardless of delivery, doctors normally advise to wait until your six week postpartum checkup to start exercising.
Being aware of hormonal changes
After giving birth, you may experience what’s known as the ‘baby blues’. You may feel depressed, anxious and emotional. These symptoms are perfectly normal for the first two weeks. If they persist, discuss it with your doctor, as your symptoms might indicate postpartum depression.
Social media can help you communicate, but nothing will ever replace face-to-face interactions. Make sure you don’t cut yourself off from the world. Get in touch with friends, join a mums’ group, whatever it is – keep yourself social. Apps and websites such as Meetup are a great way to meet new people. The first few months with baby can be tricky, and if you experience postpartum depression there’s no better way to bounce back than through friendships and connections. You can always ask other mums, who will help you find support groups and keep you in the loop.
Maintain a mind-body connection
If your brain isn’t relaxed, you’ll experience plenty of problems which may seem like they’re impossible to treat. Don’t forget to keep pursuing whatever it is that makes you happy. Yes, we know baby is your happiness now, but you’ll need the occasional break so – go ahead – go lunching with friends or go for a massage. Make sure to spend time on yourself too.