• Sherita Noel

10 things I wish I knew about a c-section

I was discharged with little to no instructions, no emphasis on what I should and shouldn't be doing. I was advised to be careful, don't wet my stitches, and finally was given a belly band and sent on my way. Little did I know my stomach would end up being a big mushy mess on the outside with a dose of an umbilical hernia and separated abdominals(abdominus recti). If you are in my position here are a few things you should know

  1. Don't rush your recovery. Allow your body the time it needs to heal. Ask your doctor when it would be ok for you to begin working out again.  I began doing sit ups and crunches way too early in the healing process and strongly feel that contributed to me having an umbilical hernia.

  2. Walk. You may feel like the nurses are being too pushy by encouraging you to walk even though you may feel as though you will break into many pieces.A little goes a long way, try walking a few steps every few hours. Doing  this can speed your recovery time.  

  3. Practice breathing. Inhale prior to doing activities such as standing, or moving from a laying to sitting position.Exhale on the effort, slowly exhale as you come to your final resting position.Proper breathing excercises done daily can assist in your recovery and require minimal effort or time. 

  4. Wear your belly band. One mistake I made was not wearing my abdominal binder band.It works as a support and pulls your abdominal muscles in and lessens the strain on your abdominal and surrounding muscles.Had I followed this,i may not have a 1 inch abdominal separation and umbilical hernia. 

  5. Drink water. Water itself is a natural healer. Drinking plenty of water not only flushes toxins from the body but it can tighten the loose skin on your belly by providing moisture to the skin and its cells.Drinking water can also reduce the chances of getting a vaginal infection, which sometimes occurs after childbirth.

Wear loose fitting clothing. Your incision will need space to breathe, not to mention any tight fitting clothing will feel like someone is placing a ton of bricks on you.

Take it easy. Slowly progress back into your normal routine but learn to rest when your body is telling you too.Seek help and take it if it is offered. 

There is no avoiding pain with a c section. Essential oils such as lavender and peppermint can help you relax and take your mind off of the pain. Natural supplements such as warm lemon water to flush toxins and aide in tissue repair. Coconut water can keep you hydrated and also help in recovery. 

Keep your incision dry. It may be tempting to scrub and rinse away the ooze coming from your incision. However bacteria breeds in water and allowing your incision to get wet is opening your entire body up to an attack of infection.Placing a maxi pad on your incision every few hours will work well to absorb the contents coming from your incision.

Refrain from strenous exercise and lifting as it can cause further damage to your muscles and prolong your recovery.Wait until you are cleared by your doctor and until your body feels ready before beginning to work out.Just think about it the muscle that supports the body was just cut in half. Healing could take months or even years for complete recovery.

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