A Cesarean section, or C-section as it is popularly called, refers to the birth of a baby not through the birth canal, but through an incision made in the abdomen and uterus of the mother. The difference with a vaginal delivery is that in case of a vaginal delivery, the baby comes out through the birth canal without any surgical procedure involved. A C-section, on the other hand, is performed in an operating room under sterile conditions.
Emergency circumstances usually warrant a C-section because the health of the mother or the baby may be at risk if vaginal delivery is performed. Several conditions related to the mother’s health as well as that of the fetus necessitate C-section. It is impossible to predict when and if these circumstances will take place; so you may go into the delivery room expecting a normal delivery and end up requiring a C-section.
Things to keep in mind during recovery after C-section
After you have undergone C-section, the recovery can be long and drawn out for several weeks. The most important thing to remember following your surgery is to not forget to take all your pain medications. A C-section involves cutting through layers of your skin, fat, muscles as well as the uterus. Pain, therefore, is an expected complication in the post C-section period. The importance of having your medications on time even if you are not experiencing pain cannot be emphasized more.
Once you are free of pain, it will be easier for you to walk around, take rest and do mild exercises. Recovering from C-section is all about being comfortable and relaxed. Make sure you have the right kind of diet, sufficient toiletries and comfortable clothing to wear.
What to wear after a C-section?
One criterion that all your clothes must pass during this period is that they must be loose. The incision is made just above your pubic bone; so your regular clothing will tend to rub and irritate the area. This may result in soreness, redness, and if the damage is bad, the stitches may even come out.
The main idea is to avoid anything that is tight around the belly. Non-maternity leggings, for example, are not the perfect C-section attire. Instead, the clothes that you had been wearing during pregnancy may come in handy once more. You do not lose weight magically after having your baby; so loose maternity clothes may just be the ideal kind of apparel for you.
Sweat pants can be a good alternative after a few weeks because they don’t possess buttons at the front. Buttons are a strict no-no during this time since they are more likely to rub against your incision than anything else.
Bathrobes and night gowns can make for perfect clothing for weeks after giving birth. They are loose and flowing, and are extremely comfortable. Hospitals usually provide you with gowns during your stay, but you can always ask whether you would be allowed to wear your own clothes.
However, night gowns may not be the apparel of choice when you have visitors. Opting for a dress with a tight waistline will make you look presentable, but is sure to bruise the area surrounding your incision. Maxi dresses, in contrast, offer a reasonable compromise at this juncture. They are loose and comfortable, without waistlines, and can make you look nice in front of an audience.
When it comes to nursing, it is important to remember that your breasts are likely to get tender and swollen once the milk comes in. You will need nursing bras for not only the comfort they provide, but also for the fact that they allow breast pads to be added that absorb leaks.
There are specifically designed undergarments called C-panties for women recovering from C-section. You can even use period panties in order to keep yourself dry and comfortable once postpartum bleeding sets in.
One of the most neglected complications of C-section is that your hands, legs and feet may remain swollen. Regular slippers or shoes, at this point of time, are certainly going to be highly uncomfortable. Make sure you buy slippers of larger sizes or even flip flops for that matter.
Recovering from C-section can be quite an enjoyable experience if you stay relaxed at all times. Since having a C-section predisposes you to having it during subsequent pregnancies, it’s a good idea to get accustomed to this kind of lifestyle on the first occasion itself.