Say NO to Bouncing back after a C-section!

burst stitches c-section education c-section recovery c-section scar c-section stitches caesarean section enhancingrecovery healing post c-section major surgery new mums supprt network Aug 07, 2022
Bouncing back after C-section

C-Section mums are the bravest mums. How else would you describe someone willing to be cut open, left with a scar and caring for an infant while recovering from major surgery?”  - Lauren Tingley 

It’s so true; why does society expect women to bounce back after their C-sections?  I'm a great believer in taking the postpartum period slowly and having just had major surgery you certainly have permission to. Most people who undergo major surgery will have a supervised rehab program to monitor their progress but not C-section mamas, we are told to go home, don't lift anything heavier than their baby and report back to the doctor in six weeks for review.

It never seemed right to me, and I often worry about the pressure mums feel to be just like their friends who have had a vaginal birth and can be far more active. We need a reality check, C-section mums need time, rest and support to have the best possible outcome after their major surgery.

Bodily tissues that have been cut through and sewn back together need time and the right conditions to heal. This can’t be rushed, it takes a full six weeks provided there are no challenges such as wound infection or the wound breaking open, which will delay healing. Placing strain on the layers through heavy lifting, exercise or sudden movements without protecting the incision area creates the risk of the wound edges separating. This gives a perfect reason to say no to the pressure to be doing high-energy activities and bouncing back.

Mindful movement and rest periods are key to enhancing the healing process, so careful planning should be a priority. The key to being able to take time and go slowly is rostering your support network. Pinky McKay, an Australian author on feeding and parenting issues offers a fantastic suggestion called the ‘Petal Roster’ to help coordinate support for each day of the week. Simply appoint a coordinator, share what help you would appreciate and enjoy the fruit of the teamwork helping you through the postpartum recovery period.

Above all, be kind to yourself and be honest with your partner and family, the acute healing period will pass, and you will be able to resume your previous activities once you’ve healed and regained your strength.


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