Things that can be normal after delivery:

  • Back pain
  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Cramping
  • Urinary discomfort
  • Baby Blues
  • Leg swelling

Things to watch for after delivery: (please contact us if any of these symptoms occur)

  • Postpartum Depression
  • Fever or chills
  • Blurred vision
  • One leg swelling with redness/pain
  • Persistent headaches
  • High blood pressure
  • Swelling of face and hands
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Incision or episiotomy infection
  • Red, painful, swollen breasts

Baby Blues and Postpartum Depression

It is very common to develop a wide array of emotions in the days following the birth of your baby. Baby blues is the term used for the state of anxiousness, sadness, anger, and crying spells that may occur 2 or 3 days after delivery. Most baby blue spells will go away within a week. During this time, you need to make sure that you have a good support system (family and friends to help you and that you can talk to).

If the blues symptoms last longer than a week or if the symptoms become more intense, you may be suffering from postpartum depression.

Signs and symptoms of depression are:

  • Baby blues that last longer than 1 week
  • Strong feelings of depression, anger, or anxiety
  • Unsettled behavior
  • Intense concern and worry about the baby
  • Lack of interest in the baby or your family
  • Panic attacks
  • Thoughts of harming the baby or yourself

If you have any of these symptoms, please call us immediately for treatment.

Vaginal Bleeding

After delivery, you may experience heavy bright red bleeding for the first few days and clots may be visible. Do not use tampons; only use sanitary pads to avoid infection. A week or so following delivery, the blood/discharge will get lighter in volume and color. Bleeding can last up to 4-6 weeks.

Painful Perineum*

During your vaginal delivery, your doctor may have had to perform an episiotomy or your perineum may have torn. You may experience some pain and discomfort once you get home.

To help with this, you may:

  • Apply cold packs or chilled witch-hazel pads to the area
  • Take sitz baths (soaking in a few inches of warm water will help)
  • May use over the counter Dermaplast spray
  • Apply warm water to the area after urination using a squeeze water bottle
  • Always wipe from front to back to prevent infection

*If you begin to show signs of infection (i.e., fever, chills, or increased pain in the area), please call our office to schedule an appointment to be seen by the doctor.

Cramping

Your uterus will continue to contract and relax as it gets back to the normal size after delivery. This can cause you to have cramping and discomfort. This is called afterbirth pains. Most of the time, the pains go away within 3 days of delivery.

Hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids may develop or worsen after childbirth. To relieve the discomfort, you may take sitz baths or use cold witch-hazel compresses. If the pain gets severe, please contact us for a prescription.

Follow up

Approximately 6 weeks after delivery, your doctor will have you come in for your postpartum exam. During this visit, the doctor will discuss your return to work, resuming sexual intercourse, birth control options, and will probably perform a pap smear.

If you had to undergo a cesarean delivery, your doctor will have you come back for a check up 1 to 2 following delivery. The main purpose of this visit is to check your incision and your vitals to ensure proper healing.