Why don’t C-section mamas get a rehab referral like other people who have major surgery?

birth trauma c-section education c-section pain c-section recovery c-section scar c-section stitches caesarean birth caesarean section healing post c-section new mums pain control rehabilitation supprt network Jan 28, 2022

I know the answer but it still beats me, especially given the fact that they are expected to do their own rehab whilst caring for another little life who has them on call 24/7!


The growing trend to discharge c-section mamas as soon as 24 hours after surgery also alarms me. It's as if no consideration is given to the birth event being a surgical rather than a natural vaginal birth, and carries with it all the risks and pain associated with any major surgery.


I spent 7 days in hospital after my first C-section admittedly I’d had complications but I know I need every single day before going back into the world with my beautiful new but highly dependent little baby. I remember the brain fog I had from the pain medication and feeling so weak and vulnerable from the limited mobility I had. Even though I was a nurse and midwife things felt so different being on the other side. I had some theoretical knowledge about birth but no idea of the impact on the body. Sometimes I worry that people look at birth as an either-or choice…C-section is often promoted as the easy way out as opposed to the indeterminate length of labour in natural birth.

Sure it's easy booking the time and date and turning up at the hospital and having a baby in your arms a few hours later, but the hard times also begin there, it takes 6 weeks of healing and care to return to pre-pregnant activity following a C-section.


Many C-section births are needed for medical reasons and can be scheduled ahead of time, however many are needed during labour as a life-saving measure for the mother or baby or both and are classified as emergency c-sections.


Whatever the reason for caesarean birth the recovery period can be tough and an understanding support network of family, friends and healthcare providers is vital to help share the workload and create an environment that helps enhance healing and rehabilitation.


Let's stop minimising this major surgery and viewing it as equal to vaginal birth and support all C-section mamas with understanding, love and compassion.


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