In-Depth Guide: What to Expect with Your First Postpartum Period

After nine months of being pregnant, it can be stressful to anticipate the first postpartum period after you enter this stage.

As more women learn about what to expect during pregnancy and childbirth, the postpartum period remains relatively uncharted territory for many.

This stage marks the gradual return of the body in its pre-pregnancy state, and it’s completely normal to have questions and feelings of uncertainty as you approach this time.

Now, we will discuss the important aspects of what to expect during your first postpartum period.

From understanding how hormones change responding as you can better prepare for your first postpartum periodwe aim to leave new mothers with practical knowledge for navigating this time with confidence and ease.

Embracing this new phase can pave the way for a smoother postpartum journey, allowing you to enjoy this time with your baby in peace.

What will my first postpartum period look like?

The first postpartum period is a unique experience for every woman, influenced by factors such as breastfeeding and general health. Some women return to their periods early a few weeks after giving birthbut others not for several months, especially if breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding releases a hormone known as prolactin, which usually stops ovulation and, therefore, usually, menstruation. It is called Lactational Amenorrheaand it is not a foolproof form of birth control.

The first few periods you experience after giving birth may also be irregular and further apart in time or closer together than a typical 28-day cycle.

Because every person is different, it is it’s hard to know what to expect as some find that their periods become lighter and less painful while others experience the opposite.

  • Lactational amenorrhea may be experienced if breastfeeding
  • It can be challenging to know exactly what to expect
  • Your period may be lighter or heavier
  • Cramping and discomfort are not uncommon
  • Your cycle may be irregular in the first few months

That’s also important to remember you may bleed for several weeks after giving birth, but it’s not your period. This bleeding is known as lochiaand it is the pouring of excess tissue and mucus remaining after birth.

You are likely to encounter discomfort or cramping after your first postpartum period. Emotions can also be heightened during this time due to the hormonal changes associated with being postpartum.

It’s also possible that your first postpartum period will be similar to your usual or potentially lighter as the uterus expands and loosens.

Understanding that Your first postpartum period may be different from pre-pregnancy menstruation and being prepared for it can help new mothers navigate this phase with greater peace of mind.

Is the first period after birth the worst?

Whether the first postpartum period will be the “worst” is subjective and can vary between individuals. Some women are looking for theirs The first postpartum period is difficult due to hormonal changes, heavier flow, or increased sensitivity in the pelvic region.

These physical factors, paired with emotional adjustment and exhaustion from caring for a newborn, can make the experience more difficult.

However, it is important to remember that every postpartum journey is uniqueand not everyone will experience discomfort that is not common at this time.

Factors such as general health, genetics, and hormone levels significantly affects how the first postpartum period goes. While some women may find it difficult, others may have it quite easily.

Some women have endometriosis although it was discovered that their first postpartum periods were less heavy and painful than they experienced before pregnancy.

looking for support from your health care provider can answer any additional questions and help ensure a smoother transition through this postpartum milestone.

Introducing the postpartum hormone handbook with a shop now button

How can I help improve my first period after birth?

There are ways to make the first postpartum period more manageable.

  • Rest as much as possible
  • Go for a walk or do postnatal yoga
  • Stay hydrated
  • Choose nutritious foods
  • Use pain relief measures if necessary
  • Ask for support from loved ones

Rest as much as possible, feed yourself with nutritious foods, and stay hydrated. Light exercise, such as walking or postnatal yoga – if you feel it can help too improve circulation and relieves cramps.

It is also beneficial to have supplies in the postpartum period for when your period returns, such as comfortable and highly absorbent sanitary pads, pain relievers (if your healthcare provider says okay), and a heating pad.

Depending on when your period returns, you might want to stick to the pads temporarily instead of tampons or menstrual cups.

Be sure to contact your health care provider and convey any concerns or questions about your postpartum period so they can put your mind at ease, provide help when needed, and make sure everything is progressing as expected.

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It may help with ask for support from friends or family who have been in this boat or to find a support group (either in person or online) that can relate to this experience.

The postpartum phase can be emotionally challenging, and a support system can make all the difference. Remember that every postpartum experience is one-of-a-kind, so be sorry to yourself and know that the discomfort will subside as your body heals and adjusts.

What should I know about breastfeeding and my period?

It is good to understand the relationship between breastfeeding and your period if you are a first-time mother. In many cases, breastfeeding can delay the return of menstruation in some women, especially those who exclusively and frequently breastfeed.

Related: What to Know About Your Postpartum Menstrual Cycle After Giving Birth

The hormone known as prolactin is released as long as a woman is breastfeeding, and it usually prevents ovulation, delaying the return of her period. However, ovulation can still occur before the first postpartum period, labor pregnancy is possible even before your period returns.

When your breastfeeding patterns change, prolactin levels will drop, triggering ovulation and menstruation. Your milk supply may decrease temporarily as soon as your period returns.

Your cycle may be a little irregular during these first few months when you return to menstruation, which is very common and should even be on a more regular cycle in the following months.

If you are worried about irregularities or anything about your postpartum period, do not hesitate to contact your doctor – especially if you want to avoid another pregnancy and discuss birth control options.

Approaching your first postpartum period with confidence

The first postpartum period is a huge part of the postpartum journey (a milestone of sorts), and is very important be educated on the subject and know what to expect. Knowing what to expect will help you navigate physical, mental, and emotional changes with more confidence.

Although experiences may differ between people, being prepared can make the transition during this time easier.

Every woman’s postpartum experience is weirdand by embracing this stage of life and being prepared, mothers can last through the postpartum phase with a deeper appreciation for the miracle of motherhood.

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