Whether you are planning to have a C-section or are recovering from a C-section, you might have questions about how long it will take to recover and how long it will take for the incision to heal, among other questions. To find answers to these questions and more, please continue reading!
Recovering from a C-section
It can take anywhere from four to six weeks to recover from a C-section. During this time, it is important to take it easy. This means resting whenever possible and keeping everything you may need for yourself or your baby within reach. If possible, during your recovery time, let someone else take care of the majority of your child’s needs. Be sure to not lift heavier objects, especially those that weigh more than your newborn baby!
Be sure to maintain good posture and support your abdomen. Sit up straight when you are walking and sitting. If you feel like you may cough, sneeze, or laugh, you should hold your abdomen near the incision site. You don’t want to burst the stitches!
Finally, take any pain medication as you need it and drink plenty of fluids. Most pain medications such as Ibuprofen or Acetaminophen are completely safe for women who are nursing but you should always check with your doctor first. In addition, drinking plenty of fluids during your recovery will not only help replace the fluids lost during delivery and breast-feeding but will also help prevent constipation. Remember to use the restroom frequently in order to avoid urinary tract infections.
As long as you feel healthy, you can eat the same foods that were part of your diet prior to having a C-section. If you have an upset stomach, then you should eat bland foods like plain rice, yogurt, and toast. If you strain with bowel movements you can try taking a fiber supplement or a laxative.
Taking care of the Incision Site
If your incision has strips on it, then those strips should remain on-site for at least 7 days or until the strip falls off. Be sure to bathe daily with warm, soapy water and pat dry with a towel. Do not use Hydrogen Peroxide to clean the incision site as it will cause the incision to heal more slowly. If the incision site is always rubbing against your clothes, then you can cover the incision site with gauze. If you do cover incision site with gauze, be sure to change and redress the incision daily.
I hope this article helps you understand how to take care of yourself after a C-section. If you do have any more questions after reading this article please contact your primary care physician and/or OB-GYN!