What's Happening to You
As you recover, hospital staff will monitor your:
- Vital signs (temperature, blood pressure, pulse, breathing)
- Vaginal flow
- Fluid intake/output
- Episiotomy stitches or cesarean incision, if any
- Need for pain medication
How long you stay in the hospital is a decision made by you and your physician, but it is affected by state and national laws and your insurance provider. Insurance companies usually cover about 24 hours for an uncomplicated vaginal birth and 48 to 72 hours for a cesarean birth.
Tips for Your Well-Being
- Dramatic changes in your body are to be expected in the first month after delivery. But call your doctor immediately for certain conditions. Know what to watch for.
- To help tone your pelvic muscles, do kegel exercises—tighten the muscles you use to stop urine flow. Hold while you count to 20, then relax.
- If you are not breastfeeding, wear a well-fitting, supportive bra 24 hours a day for the first 2 weeks.
- Many new mothers experience temporary swelling of the breasts when their milk comes in. Try these techniques for help with engorgement.
- Continue taking your prenatal vitamins or a good multivitamin while you heal.
- Feeling tired and sometimes overwhelmed by the needs of your new baby is normal. If you have more pronounced or longer lasting symptoms than baby blues after you go home, call your doctor.
How Valley Medical Center Can Help
- You have a call button on your bed, and your nurse's phone number is on your message board. Please ask for any help or information you need.
- Channel 29 on your hospital television runs a continuous program (24 hours) about mom and new baby care. Channel 15 offers the same programming in Spanish.
- Our lactation consultants are available from 9 am to 5 pm while you're in the hospital.
- Our pharmacy can fill any medications you need before you head home.
- We offer free weekly parent support groups for the entire first year following birth. For more information, call 425.228.3440, ext. 2526.
- We want to make sure things go well once you're home. See our Mom's Checklist for breastfeeding.
- Breastfeeding mothers often have discomfort when baby first latches on. Try these tips to relieve sore nipples.