Firstly, how bad does your bottom tend to hurt after birth? I know everyone is different, and different situations happen in different labors. But does a slight tear make a HUGE difference in pain? [assuming you only tore in one birth? Or did you in both?]. Was it just uncomfortable pains? Or was it the type you stick on pain meds for because otherwise it wouldn’t be bearable? <3
My bottom just about killed me the first time around, but I was a special case (breathe a sigh of relief!) because I tore really badly. The doctor didn’t tell me what degree tear it was, but I suspect third (I think if it was a fourth degree tear he would’ve been stitching me up longer down there). He also didn’t tell me to get a comfortable pillow (like a donut pillow) to sit on. I think regardless this eases some of the pain. The second time around I didn’t tear nearly so badly, and my doctor (different doc) told me he was so sorry that I had torn and I was going to be in a lot of pain. When I went for my six week checkup I told him it was nothing compared to the first baby and he was so nice for telling me what to expect! So… Because I didn’t tear so badly the second time I healed MUCH more quickly, and within just a couple of days I was perfectly fine. I would say the first time around I was on a fair amount of pain killers, and the second time around I just used Advil or Tylenol for the pain. It’s like the pp described, a stinging pain. Be prepared for using a little bottle to squirt warm water in there, regardless of whether or not you tear. It helps to get the blood out from there, and you won’t be able to wipe with toilet paper for at least a few days. You will also need clean towels or washcloths you don’t mind getting dirty because that’s what you will pat yourself dry with.
Also, how common are tears? Does this happen to a lot of woman? And not to be tmi, but is there a general reason that tears occur? <3 I hope that doesn’t sound wrong!!! But is it preventable? Or does it just happen to some woman? <3
I read recently up to 80% of women tear. Of course, every woman is different in how much and where she tears, but usually they are not bad! You can prepare your body for birth and it will help you not to tear. I don’t remember what you use (I want to say vitamin E oil, though. You can look it up) but there is an oil that you can rub down there and it helps that skin to become a little more elastic and stretchy, and that will greatly decrease your chances of tearing.
For how long do you remain looking very pregnant? Such as the poster above saying you still look 9 months pregnant after birth… does it start shrinking a bit to not look to pregnant and to the “not-back-to-my-old-self-yet” likeness within like days, weeks, or months? <3
OOh, tough question! Haha. With my first baby I had round ligament pain, so I wasn’t allowed to exercise, according to my doc. I desperately wanted to though, but it hurt so badly! And I had gestational diabetes, so I gained weight quickly and had really no way to keep it balanced until we figured out about the GD. Doc did the test late, so it wasn’t until I gained 15 pounds in one month that he did the test. (Grr…) Anyway, wouldn’t you know it, I still can’t lose those last 15 pounds!! With my second, I exercised like crazy. Okay, not like crazy, but I made absolutely sure to get in at least a 20-30 minute walk every day. I didn’t really do anything else. I only gained 22 pounds with #2, and by the time I left the hospital after he was born I only had 3-4 to lose. It was water weight and came off easily. Breastfeeding helps weight to come off, I have heard, but I don’t feel like from my own experiences that its true. But I know that the hormone you release while breastfeeding causes your uterus to contract (feels similar to menstrual cramps. Nothing like labor pain) and return to its normal size (yay!!!), which takes quite a while. That is part of the reason for the distended belly.
I have read that engorgement, improper latching, etc can all be really painful to you. But as Q1 was like, is it just really uncomfortable? Or is it really bad pain? <3
Improper latching is pretty painful, but you should meet with a lactation consultant right away. She will be a ble to identify any latching issues right away and tell you how to fix it. Both hospitals I have delivered at have sent one in to see me in the first couple of hours. They are wonderful.
Does your bodies metabolism completely change after giving birth? Like, I am the type who’s got a very high metabolism, and I’ve never been overweight before. I just lose weight quick! I have done light exercising, like Yoga, before. And I plan to continue a pregnancy yoga soon enough. And after I give birth, and once I feel up to it, I’d like to do a Mommy and Baby sort of yoga class! I don’t expect to bounce right back into shape too soon, but in continuing regular exercise and all, would your body still burn fat away in the same way? Or does it all change? I am still very young. Well, not too young But a college age girl. And my metabolism hasn’t slowed yet…
I was 22 when #1 was born and 24 when #2 was born, and have always had a fast metabolism. I am just now beginning to feel it slow down on its own. I really don’t think having babies changed my metabolism, although I did find that it has made it harder to lose weight. Maybe because I relied on my metabolism so much before, so I never was extremely physically active? Be aware though, that even if your metabolism doesn’t change, your body will. You might be a size 2-4 now, but you will likely be a 6 or so when your body returns to its new normal. I say new normal because it is so extremely unusual for a woman to return to her previous pant size after a baby is born. It’s not about determination and losing weight, your hips have widened for the baby and will never go all the way back to where they were. Sorry. This was a big blow to me, no one prepared me for it.
I think it is so wonderful that you are asking questions! Like LucyKate, if you would like to ask more questions via PM, please feel free! I love to talk about pregnancy and babies and am more than happy to answer any questions you might have.