Questions and more question. First time or experienced, you have a number of questions post childbirth that need answers. Here are some of the questions we get very often that we have compiled for you.
Do I and the baby have to stay at home for 40 days as required by tradition?
It makes perfect sense to stay at home for this period. You have to understand that your body has gone through a most rigorous physical experience with labour. Delivery is extremely taxing on the body and your body needs a lot of rest to recover from it. Your immunity is low as you have lost a lot of blood and body fluids.
Not only that, there are certain risks involved for the first 2 weeks after delivery for both mother and child. Postpartum haemorrhage and infections, infections and opening up of the episiotomy and Caesarian section, formation of blood clots in the mother are most likely to occur during this period. The baby also has very low immunity in the early weeks after its birth and is most vulnerable to infections. Immunity will only develop gradually as baby grows.
If you do have to go outside the home or travel you must take certain precautions. As far as possible do not move out for at least 2 to 4 weeks. Do not step outside when the weather is cold, rainy or foggy as you could easily catch a cold. Cover up properly, so that you stay warm. Do not indulge in heavy exercise or lift any weights. If taking baby along see that he is swaddled properly as baby's small body can lose heat easily. Do not allow strangers to pick up or touch your baby. Avoid people who have a cold or are sick. Avoid crowded areas and also places where people may be smoking. Make sure you are carrying safe drinking water for both yourself and the baby.
Are the foods offered after childbirth really beneficial for me?
Most foods advised after delivery are high calorie and loaded with ghee and nuts to help you recover faster. Eating them in moderation is okay but if you feel you have or are putting on excessive weight it might be advisable to avoid them. Instead you can go in for nutritious and healthy meals which will benefit both you and the baby.
Certain foods are also advised to increase the production of milk. However, feeding the baby often and massaging the breasts will naturally stimulate production to adequate levels.
How will I know that my milk production is enough for the baby?
If baby has learnt to latch-on properly breast feeding will feel comfortable and painless and that is how it is supposed to be. Also if baby looks satisfied after feeds and is growing well there may be no need for any worries.
Is it okay for me to drink cold water after delivery?
New mothers are often advised not to drink cold water. The rationale behind this is that all things 'hot' will help in healing and recovery. However, there is certainly no harm in drinking cold water especially in the summers when you need to stay well hydrated for nursing purposes. But seeing as you are vulnerable to infections during this stage you might want to avoid ices and lollies so that you do not get a sore throat or infection especially if you are liable. To be extra careful you can drink cool refreshing water from an earthen pot or container.
Will eating certain foods cause colic in baby?
You may have been advised not to eat spicy and oily foods, or certain other foods as these could cause colic in the baby if you are breast feeding. However, it might be best for you to stick to a regular nutritious diet and if there is any connection between any food you eat and colic in the baby you will find out soon enough.
Do I have to wear an abdominal bind after delivery?
A cloth corset is often advised after delivery so that your abdomen doesn't get flabby. It also helps in keeping internal organs in place. However, it might cause excess bleeding, rashes and pain. Take the advice of your doctor in this regard.