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During the months of February and March 2011, the Teen Parents Support Programme are holding Student Information Sessions.
The Cork Teen Parents Support Programme have moved to a new premises at 34 Paul St.
A new research report 'Granparents Before Time' exploring the needs an
After the birth
Its good to know what to expect after your baby is born. Being aware of what happens means you won't need to worry over things that are actually normal for new mums.
Practical things to know after the birth.
- If you are going to breastfeed your baby the sooner you put the baby to the breast after the birth the better. During the first few days the breast milk produces a straw colored liquid called “colostrum”. This is packed full of valuable antibodies to protect the baby from disease. It also helps the new baby to pass the first bowel motion easier. After about 3 days the breast milk “comes in” and your breasts may feel full and heavy. Feeding your baby often and on demand builds up and maintains your milk supply.
- If you are not breastfeeding the milk will still come in and your breasts will feel full, so you will need a well supportive bra and breast pads for comfort. As the breast milk is not being used, your breasts will eventually stop producing milk over a week or two after the birth.
- You will be bleeding from the vagina for a few weeks after the birth. It may be quite heavy for the first few days and you may pass some clots of blood. You will need plenty of large sanitary towels. The midwife in the hospital will ask you questions about how heavy the bleeding is to ensure that all is well. Don’t be embarrassed to ask questions if you are at all concerned. If the blood flow gets very heavy again after you go home do get in touch with the hospital or your doctor. Try to avoid tampons after the birth until after your first full period. Your first period will be delayed if you are breastfeeding.
- You will feel crampy pains after the birth. This is due to the womb contracting down and reducing in size after the birth. A mild pain killer should help you cope with them. Pains may be stronger for a few days if you are breastfeeding which is actually good as it means that you are getting back to normal quickly.
- If you needed stitches in your vaginal area following a tear after the birth, you may feel uncomfortable for a while. It is important to keep the area as clean as possible. If there is a bidet (a wash basin for your bottom!!) in the hospital, use it after going to the toilet, especially after moving your bowels. A salt bath is recommended to aid healing and dry gently afterwards. Drink plenty of fluids and fresh fruit and vegetables to avoid getting constipated which will put pressure on the wound or cause pain when you go to the loo. The midwives will check this wound before you go home. The stiches used will normally melt away over time after the birth.
- It is important that you try to keep things as calm as possible after the birth so that you can spend time bonding and getting to know your baby. You will be tired as labour is both physically and emotionally draining. Try to limit your visitors in the first few days and get plenty of rest and sleep when you can.
- You may feel a little weepy for a few days after the birth, this is normal. If you are still feeling down or unable to cope after you leave hospital, do tell your public health nurse or GP.