Female Anatomy Changes Post-Partum
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There are some very significant changes your body will go through postpartum . The most heavily affected body organs will be your vagina and breasts. Learn more in the video.
Transcript: No part of your body is harder hit by giving birth than your vagina and breasts. In the several days...
No part of your body is harder hit by giving birth than your vagina and breasts. In the several days following birth, your breasts will produce a yellowish fluid called colostrum. In the several days following birth, your breasts will produce a yellowish fluid called colostrum. When your infant suckles, it will cause the release of hormones that trigger your milk. However, even if you choose not to nurse, your breasts will produce milk for several days to a week. If you want the milk to stop flowing, you shouldn't allow your baby to nurse, nor should you remove the milk in any other manner. However, these drugs come with additional health risks to the mother, so they are not commonly prescribed. You will notice discharge known as lochia from your vagina. This occurs as cells from the lining of your uterus slough off. Lochia starts out as bright red blood, then tapers off before finally stopping. After you give birth, your uterus is 15 times heavier than it was when you got pregnant! For this reason, you'll be able to feel it a few finger widths below the top of your belly button. But by six weeks after delivery, your uterus will return to its old size. Having a baby definitely changes your body, but take comfort in the fact that most alterations are only temporary.More »
Last Modified: 2014-02-03 | Tags »
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If you've just had a baby and you're feeling less than ecstatic, be on the lookout for post-partum depression! Learn the signs.
Transcript: You've just had a beautiful baby, and for some reason you can't seem to stop crying. If this sounds familiar,...
You've just had a beautiful baby, and for some reason you can't seem to stop crying. If this sounds familiar, know that you aren't alone...as many as 80 percent of new moms experience some sadness postpartum. In most cases, these "baby blues" are a passing state of emotions that only last a few days or weeks after delivery. Moms who experience postpartum blues may feel irritable or sad, and have trouble sleeping. Normal post-baby sadness doesn't interfere with a woman's ability to care for her baby. In about 10 to 20 percent of new moms, however, the baby blues are more severe. Postpartum depression is a condition that DOES interfere with a mom's ability to care for her child. This illness was brought into the spotlight in 2005, when model and actress, Brooke Shields came forward to discuss her struggles with postpartum depression. Shields even wrote a book, "Down Came the Rain," to publicize the condition. The symptoms of postpartum depression include frequent crying jags, sleep disturbances, thoughts of suicide, weight and energy loss, lack of interest in anything, and feelings of guilt. An even more serious postpartum disorder is known as postpartum psychosis. This rare condition leads to psychotic symptoms, such as hallucinations and delusions, following a baby's birth. Moms with postpartum psychosis are more likely to have obsessive thoughts about their babies and may act upon ideas of hurting them. No matter what postpartum condition a new mom has, a hormone imbalance is thought to play a role. That's because levels of the hormones estrogen, progesterone, and cortisol fall rapidly in the 48 hours after delivery. Women who develop a postpartum disorder are more sensitive to these changes. Women with a history of depression or other mental illnesses, women experiencing relationship problems, and moms who have had a previous postpartum condition, are all more likely to develop one of these illness. But there is help for postpartum disorders! Moms who have the "baby blues," may find that being surrounded with a support network, talking to other mothers, and getting more rest will usually lead to an abating of symptoms in a few short weeks. Women experiencing postpartum depression, however, will probably need a little extra help. Your doctor may suggest psychological counseling, or group therapy. She may also prescribe an anti-depressant medication, like Paxil or Prozac, which will help regulate hormone imbalances. If you're breastfeeding, talk to your doctor about medications that are safe for you AND your baby. If your doctor diagnoses you with postpartum psychosis, your treatment will involve more intense therapy and an anti-psychotic medication. If you are among the women who experience postpartum sadness, remember that you are not alone and that you WILL recover. Above all, do not be embarrassed about this common condition! Please, see your doctor if you are concerned about post-partum depression.More »
Last Modified: 2013-07-23 | Tags »
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