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Bringing a baby in this world, is the most exhilarating moment in most women's lives. Yet, post pregnancy days are filled with insecurities and uncertainties. Sleepless nights, stretch marks, healing uterus and an unappealing body. So unless you are shilpa shetty or malaika arora khan, most new mothers suffer from figure issues after giving birth to their child.
In fact the issue of maintaining the personality, is quite real regardless of what men say to their women. According to a yummy mummy survey over 90 percent of new and expecting fathers agree that they want their wives to look the way she used to look before the pregnancy.
This article talks in detail about the body and mind issues of new mothers and ways to deal with them, based on knowledge shared by expert indian gynaecologists on popular daily newspapers.
1) what's the fuss about yummy mummy?
A yummy mummy is someone who is confident of herself, is comfortable with her body and her personality. A yummy mummy is a mother who takes care of her body and her mind. She exercises regularly, is particular about her fitness level and exudes confidence.
2) body issues that a new mother needs to accept:
A woman will gain a certain amount of weight during pregnancy to include the weight of the baby, the placenta, the amniotic fluid, the enlarged womb, an increased blood volume, plus enlarged breasts and other fluid retention, commonly noticed as swollen ankles. Additionally a pregnant woman will store a certain amount of fat to help nourish her child during breast feeding. Women are expected to gain between 11-15 kgs during a normal pregnancy. Approximately 2-3kgs of this weight is designed to remain after the birth, to provide a fat source for breast milk. The remaining weight gain will either disappear immediately, the baby, placenta etc. Or resolve over time as the uterus contracts and the body returns to normal fluid levels. The concept of" eating for two" can however cause some women to gain more weight than just normal pregnancy weight. You may well look down at your body in the months after having a baby and wonder if it's ever going to look the same again.
Another worry that every pregnant woman has is about stretch marks and wondering if they are ever going to go. For this, it is advisable to try and minimize stretch marks during pregnancy by regularly applying moisturizers and oils which contain vitamin e, lavender, calendula and rosemary. The same can be used after pregnancy also on the abdomen and breast to reduce stretch marks.
3) diet essentials for a pregnant and new mother:
Eating healthy is of utmost importance for a pregnant and a new mother. A good balance of proteins, fats and carbohydrates is a must in a pregnant and new mother's diet. Extra milk and curd should be had to increase the intake of calcium. Women should avoid excessive intake of salty, spicy and deep fried foods. It is advisable that they avoid cake, sweets and ice creams altogether as the women are in a state of semi diabetes because the placental hormones are anti -insulin. In addition, women should have a lot of fruits, vegetables and nuts in their diets.
4) what are the ways a new mother can ensure her pre-pregnancy shape after delivery?
Exercising is important to get back to shape but what is more, is doing the right kind of exercise.
-- the pelvic floor (the hammock-like layer of muscles that support the bladder, uterus, and bowel). If you were good, you'll have done your pelvic floor exercises during pregnancy. If not, don't let that stop you from starting now - they're all-important in the battle to keep leaky bladders at bay and, as an added bonus, can help to improve satisfaction during sex!
-- you can also make a start on the long, slow process of getting your tummy muscles back in shape by softly pulling them in whenever you get the chance. (if you're not sure how, imagine drawing your tummy in towards your spine.) hold for a few seconds, breathing all the while, and then release. Do this as many times a day as you can fit in. (it's also a good idea to hold in your tummy this way when you bend over or lift anything: it will help to support your back and so help to ease or prevent back pain, a common problem after birth.) you could also squeeze in a few pelvic tilts when you find yourself with a free moment: stand with your back to a wall, slide a hand into the gap between your lower back and the wall and use your tummy muscles to tilt your pelvis backwards. Hold for a little while before releasing. You'll know you're doing it right if you can feel your lower back pushing against your hand.
-- gentle walking is also okay in the early weeks
-- power walking: an ideal way for new mums to exercise as it can be fitted into a normal day.
-- pilates or yoga: these are great for improving strength and flexibility, but you'll still need to raise your heartbeat with some sort of aerobic exercise couple of times a week.
- swimming, or aquarobics: a perfect all-round exercise - it will increase your heart rate but as the water offers you support, has minimal risk of injury. It's also good for firming up post-baby breasts
5) how much should a mother wait after a c-sec before resuming workout?
Whether it's a c- sec or normal delivery, no strenuous workout should be done for at least 40 days or 6 weeks after delivery. It takes 40 days for the large uterus to involute back to its small pre pregnant state. Exercise during this period would strain the ligaments and cause back ache. It may also predispose the uterus to prolapse after menopause during weakened ligaments that support the uterus. In addition, after a c-sec, the abdominal muscles and ligaments need to heal well, so active workout is recommended only after 3 months.
6) what are the dos and don'ts of the first 3-6 months after delivery for workout/diet?
After 3-6 months, all forms of exercise are permissible, however, during breast feeding, lifting weights and push- ups should be restricted. Breast feeding mothers require extra calories and nutritious food and diet. Diet foods or low calories diets are recommended. A good balance of protein, carbohydrates and fats along with extra milk and fruits are a must. Breast feeding itself is a great calorie burner and helps the mother to lose weight and regain her pre pregnant figure within 6 months of delivery.
7) how many post-partum depression cases do you get on an average?
70 % of women experience mild baby blues for about 1-2 weeks due to placental hormones leaving the body. The post- partum depression is a bit rarer. The signs and symptoms are more severe and last longer.
The symptoms may include:
Depressed mood/ severe mood swings
Difficulty in bonding with the baby
Withdrawing from family and friends
Loss of appetite or eating too much
Inability to sleep/ insomnia
Fatigue and loss of energy
Intense irritability and anger
Feelings of worthlessness and inadequacy
Severe anxiety and panic attacks
Thoughts of suicide ad harming the baby
Very severe post -partum depression may lead to psychosis. These patients do require help in the form of counseling and medication.
8) how can a mother avoid succumbing to depression?
Women should attend pre-natal classes, which prepare them for labor delivery and breast feeding during pregnancy. After birth, the mother should
Accept help from family and friends
Connect with new mothers
Always take time to take care of themselves
Avoid alcohol and medicines that cause depression
All said and done, it is very important that dads support new mothers to regain their lost shape, without hampering their confidence.
Post pregnancy, a woman is very stressed- she is worried about the baby and herself and is very busy taking care of the two. Being a mother can be very taxing and there are a few simple things that fathers can do.
Things dads can do with the baby:
Take baby out for a walk so mum can have some quiet time.
Feed the baby in the middle of the night or bring the baby to mum if breastfeeding. He could also help the baby feed if there is expressed breastmilk or feed the baby in the morning so mum can get some extra sleep.
Help to look after older children so that mum can adjust to life with a newborn again.
Make sure you learn how to bathe the baby and change nappies.
Things dads can do for mum:
Make mum any meals, e. G. Breakfast in the morning before going to work.
Tell her she's doing a great job and that you are proud of her and how much you love her.
No pressure for sexual acts - intimacy will return again soon.
Let her de-brief / talk about the labour and birth as many times as necessary, without getting annoyed. Being a good listener is important.
Tell her that it doesn't matter if the home is messier than usual and help to do a bit of tidying.
Let her cry or be emotional without trying to'fix' her - simply comfort her.
Husband's support makes a huge difference in the new mother experience of every woman and only makes him happier in return!
If you have any gynae / pregnancy concerns, feel free to consult me privately by clicking on'consult' button below.
Dr sangita malhotra
Hello, My sister who is 28 years old got married two months back. After two weeks of marriage she wasn't well n suffering pain in her back n wasn't able to getup from her bed. Doctors done her blood n urine tests which showed dat her right ovary is enlarged. She had problem with her periods which usually came after every 2-3 months time. Secondly doctor also suggested her MRI scanning which showed dat she is having axial ankylosing spondylitis. Can you suggest dat what is it actually and how is it going to affect her in future n will she cure from these? Will she have children n what is risk for her children? Kindly suggest d causes, treatments n care to be taken for her kids.
One of the major milestones in a woman’s life is the entry into motherhood. For most women, when this does not happen in the natural logical sequence of things, there is anxiety and lot of pressure from family and friends.
However, with advancements now, there are options like intrauterine insemination and in vitro fertilization (IUI and IVF) available, which can help increase the chances of conception and pregnancy. IVF is where the egg is retrieved from the woman’s womb, fertilised externally and then transplanted back into the uterus where it grows to full term. However, there are always unanswered questions like how long to wait before going for IVF, is it the right procedure for me, etc.
Read on to know to find answers to some of these.
- Maternal age: As a woman reaches 35 and a man reaches 40, the fertility rates drop significantly. The chances that a woman at 35 will conceive is about 20%, which goes down to 5% if the woman is 40. However, this rate can be significantly increased by using IVF. The quality of the egg would gradually deteriorate, and so if a woman is nearing 40, it is better to consider IVF as the ovarian reserve would be optimal with IVF.
- Failed intrauterine insemination: In couples who have problems with the sperm reaching the uterus, intrauterine insemination (IUI) is first attempted. However, if 3 or more attempts of fail, it is time to consider IVF.
- Duration of inability to conceive: While some couples conceive quite promptly in a month or two, most take about 6 to 8 months of unprotected sex to conceive. Therefore, IVF can be an option if you are failing to conceive even after a year. Less than a year, don’t fret. Take it easy and it might just do the trick.
- Medical health: Both the partner’s medical health should be taken into account. Lifestyle changes like smoking, alcohol abuse, drug abuse should be considered, which can account for poor sexual performance and therefore lead to an inability to conceive. Health conditions like diabetes and heart disease can also lead to infertility. Hypothyroidism in women is another thing that must be ruled out, as it often leads to an inability to conceive.
- Sexual problems with the partner: One of the first things to do before going for IVF is to check that the male does not have any issues. Be it erection issues or ejaculation issues or sperm issues, they need to be ruled out. Sperm quality, quantity, and motility have to be analysed, and if they are optimal, IVF can be considered. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a gynaecologist.
My sister's menstrual cycle discontinued for about 53 day rather than 21days. We were happy about her pregnancy but the problem was she can't check her pregnancy and not consulted a doctor due some busy schedule. But after 53 days her menstrual cycle is back, we are depress now. She is complaining some lower abdomen pain also. What is actually going on, we will consult tomorrow, before that I want to ask doctors about it. Is she was pregnant or MC can be this much delay. Before this she always had regular period. Please advice and help.
5 months are passed for my marriage bt my wife is still not going pregnant please offer some tips to help us.
The world is getting busier with every passing day. All are running constantly from playing one role to the other, switching from one task to another. It seems like the messages or the phone calls cannot wait even for like 5 minutes. Do we feel a sense of done at the end of the day? Nah!! We always go to sleep with what to prioritize for next day and the routine continues. Holidays or vacations are no exception either, with our mobiles and devices constantly reminding us of what we should do.
However, of late, there has been a lot of emphasis on the need to relax and recharge the mind and the body. While the body is easier to manage, the mind is a more challenging issue as it is constantly ticking.
Here are some ways to help you relax, suggest you go completely blank in your mind and not do anything during this period.
- Exercise: Whether it is a vigorous workout at the gym, aerobic dancing, or lying in the pool, take a pick. While it may sound like a tiresome errand, most of these heavy workouts relax and recharge very effectively. The energy level post a good workout is to be experienced to be believed.
- Simply sit and meditate: May sound silly, but it is equally difficult to do too. Try to sit quiet with closed eyes without any movement, physical or mental, for about 5 minutes and experience the peace for yourself. When you open your eyes, you will feel rejuvenated.
- Square breathing: Like a square with 4 equal sides, this has 4 equal steps. Inhaling for x seconds, holding it for x seconds, exhaling for x seconds, and waiting out for the next x seconds. 4 or 5 is a good count to start with, but if there are health concerns, then even 2 or 3 should help relax and recharge.
- Music: Music is said to be one of the best soothing agents, create a playlist of your favorite genres and list of music. Be it instrumental or vocal, rap or reggae, classical or pop, take your pick and get lost in it completely. If you are game, even learning music can be very relaxing.
- Read a book: Another very popular technique is to take a book and get lost completely in the story and its characters. Again, pick something that you would enjoy and see you relaxed and recharged.
Each of these requires some time, the most common question is when do I do this? Tell yourself, you don't get time, you need to make time. Once you see the benefits of recharging your brain, you will make time for it. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a psychologist.