I thought I would share with you what I have been using/doing to help in my postpartum recovery. Now that I have been through this twice I have some comparisons to make and advice for some of the expecting mothers out there. Keep in mind I am not telling you what to do. I am only sharing what has helped me 🙂
First off. I told you about my amazing vitamins a while back. Click here to read that post. I absolutely love my vitamins. I packed them in my hospital delivery bag making sure not to miss a day. They really do help with my energy level and keep my body in excellent working order. When in your postpartum weeks you really need to take care of yourself. I know its difficult with a brand new baby but if you start lacking in certain areas like sleep and substance, life really does become more difficult. Just because you had baby doesn’t mean you need to forget all about your health! You are the one caring for this child! Make sure that you have good vitamins and remember to take them daily!
Next, the belly band! I was so excited to use it and now I can tell you… I LOVE IT! After I had my first son Danny I felt really self conscious of my flabby tummy. It doesn’t stay that way for to long but its a little shocking to see when your baby finally pops out. I was prepared for it with my second child but I can honestly say the belly band did help a lot with pulling my stomach in faster. They suggest wearing it for the first six weeks after delivery. I wore it religiously for the first two weeks now its a little more sporadic. Its really not that comfortable. I started using it the second day after delivering my second son Eli and I instantly started feeling better. I helped my aching back and because it added a lot of support, it made it easier to get up and move around. When your baby pops out you don’t have much stomach muscle so the support it offers is wonderful. Every day I wore it I could see a difference. I could pull it just a little tighter every morning and visually I could see my tummy shrinking. Now that I am three weeks postpartum the effects of it are slowing down but my core is tighter and stronger and I honestly feel like I have healed faster because of it. I definitely suggest using it!
Another item I have fallen in love with is Bio-oil. This helps with any kind of skin blemish including??? You guessed it! Stretch marks! Now I don’t have horrible stretch marks but there are visible and they bother me. I didn’t start using the Bio-oil until very late in my pregnancy. however, I have been using it constantly since baby was born and I love it! The red areas are already starting to fade, the skin feels tighter and oh so soft after using it. The smell is my one complaint but it isn’t that bad. It’s a little strong while applying it but fades over time. I know I said I might take a few before and after pictures but just couldn’t bring myself to do it 🙁 You can Google results from Bio-oil and find many before and after pictures there.
One other thing I did was purchase some postpartum clothes. I didn’t spend that much or purchase a whole new wardrobe! I just bought a pair of lose fitting yoga type pants and few lose fitting shirts. I went up a size from what I normally would purchase and it worked great. Of course all the shirts are meant to be lose fitting as well. This has helped eminentsly with my self esteem! I was wearing my husbands clothes the last couple months of my pregnancy so being able to switch back to women’s clothes made me feel like a normal woman again! That is very important in the recovery weeks. Stay comfortable and wear things that help you feel pretty.
Maybe its just me that feels self conscious after giving birth. I feel like my body is a complete mess and I wonder if I will ever get it back in shape! I know I will, but looking in the mirror with a postpartum body can be a little shocking and/or depressing. I cant be to hard on myself though. After all my baby is beautiful and healthy so I must have done something right 😉
Any who… all the items listed above have really helped me. I didn’t do very much after having my first son and the transition was difficult for me. I am so glad I took the time to research and take better care of my body this time.
Next on my list is to start doing some stretching/yoga DVD’s. My body is sore and my back aches. I know doing some small workouts will help with that. Along with a couple chiropractor visits 😉 I have been waiting to start these until I got some stomach muscle back and well, adjusting to a new baby has taken up most of my time lately.
Hope you find this helpful and are able to use if for future references. Just remember to find what works best for you and take care of yourself! If it means spending a little extra money than do it! Postpartum depression is a serious thing and anything you can do to help yourself feel healthy and beautiful will help protect you from that. It has helped and worked for me anyway. Best of luck to all you mommies out there!