First 6 weeks after giving birth?
The Puerperium is the name given to the period of time and the process of change your body goes through after giving birth. With the loss of that placenta, you lose one of the largest hormone-producing glands your body has ever know. The sudden withdrawal of all those hormones initiates a cascade of bodily events. Unfortunately, this process can take some time, but we have included some information to tell you what to expect during this time.
Once you have given birth, you begin a process called Involution. This involves your uterus contracting to it’s pre-pregnancy size. You will still look a little bit ‘pregnant’ until your uterus has returned to its normal size and this could take some time.
The fluid that your body stored up in the last months of pregnancy will find its way back into your bloodstream. There the kidneys will remove the amount not needed. For most women, that means they will urinate huge amounts in the days after delivery.
Lochia is the bloody discharge after birth. This is the lining of the womb which will take about 4-6 weeks to fully expel. The discharge may appear red at first but later it may appear brownish.
If you are breastfeeding, you produce a hormone called oxytocin, which actually helps the uterus contract. It may also cause cramping or a sudden rush of lochia while you are feeding your baby.
If lochia appears excessive or is accompanied by a bad odour, you should contact your doctor to discuss it.