How do you recover from childbirth, in a slow and sensible way? Here are ten suggestions to help when you've just had a baby
If, like the Duchess of Sussex, you've just had a baby, you may be wondering how long it will take for you to recover from childbirth and more importantly, start to feel like yourself again.
Firstly, congratulations! And secondly, it's important to make sure you have a slow and sensible recovery as possible.
You might have breezed through 9.5 months of pregnancy, had a a quick text-book labour and an easy birth and now you're at home with your gorgeous baby.
You might have spent 9.5 months with morning sickness, having every single pregnancy ailment going, been uncomfortably overdue, then a stressful labour and delivery you'd not planned for and are still reeling from.
Or you're likely to be a combination of any of those.
But once you leave hospital and are suddenly tasked with the daunting responsibility of keeping a baby alive when every plant you've ever bought has withered up, it's really important that you don't neglect yourself.
Your body has spent 40+ weeks growing, changing and nurturing your baby and you really do need to spend some time recovering as much as possible.
Here are ten quick tips to help you recover from childbirth:
Sleep when you can...everyone will tell you to 'sleep when the baby sleeps' and you probably won't! But try and nap when you can, or at least rest.
Do NOT run around doing the washing, ironing, cooking and cleaning when your baby dozes off. Get someone else to do all these things (like one of your guests, who should be happy to help).
In fact, do as little as possible. Force yourself to sit down when you can.
Have a week of pyjama days after the birth (no-one will notice, or care).
But get dressed if it makes you feel more like you.
Accept ALL the help you are offered.
Ask for help when you need it, especially if you need help with breastfeeding
Once you’re home from hospital, say NO to visitors for as long as you want. Obviously there may be exceptions, but feel free to be as restrictive as you want. And don't feel bad about it.
Make sure you eat well and drink lots of water, especially if you're feeding. Encourage people to bring meals! Don't even think about starting a diet, and have more cake.
Be kind to yourself. Sleep deprivation, hormones and the baby blues can all play a part in making you feel glum after pregnancy. It will pass, but if it doesn't, make sure you speak to a midwife or doctor.
In a nutshell, don't try to be or do too much. Accept that you will feel exhausted, sore from delivery and that your emotions will be all over the place. Listen to your body and take things slowly.