How to Care for Postpartum Bleeding

Postpartum bleeding is a normal occurrence after child birth. Women who have had C-section deliveries also experience vaginal bleeding. The postpartum bleeding is termed lochia and is different from menstruation. Hence there is no pain involved but only a general feeling of discomfort for the first few days.

The bleeding continues for two to three weeks post delivery. In some cases the bleeding can even last as long as eight weeks. It is important to keep yourself free from infection at this time as well as take care not to end up with a postpartum haemorrhage.

Use sanitary napkins to absorb the flow of blood. Pack some in the bag that you have prepared for your stay in hospital although hospitals also provide with heavy duty sanitary pads post delivery. You can also try using pads available for overnight use when you are back home.

Take care to change your pad regularly. This means changing every few hours to lessen your discomfort. Also notice the frequency with which you have to change. If you are changing every hour then get in touch with your doctor as soon as you can. Heavy flow of blood could mean that you are haemorrhaging.

Don’t use tampons for at least first six weeks postpartum. Using tampons can cause the bacteria to enter the healing uterus. These bacteria can cause infection of the uterus. Do not start long walks for the first two weeks after delivery. Long walks and standing for too long can make you  bleed heavily.

Don’t become anaemic. Some women lose a lot of blood during the first few weeks after delivery because they don’t take care of themselves well. Make a responsible person take care of the baby for few hours every day while you rest and regain your strength. Taking proper nutrition is also important for your body to make up for the lost blood.

Observe changes in the color of lochia with each passing week. What started out as a red discharge will become brown, yellow or even white in color as the weeks pass. This is quite normal and not a cause of worry. However, you can call up your doctor and discuss any issues regarding lochia.

Immediately call your doctor if you experience fever and chill along with the bleeding. This can be a sign of severe uterus infection.

Anubha Pandey