Elcs recovery tips please!!

(29 Posts)
plannedshock Sat 30-Mar-13 14:06:49

Got my elcs booked for thurs, pre-op tues. 1st baby anyone got any tips-like arnica-when do I start using that or anything you could possibly think of!! Any help would be massively appreciated!!

Stand up as straight as you possibly can afterwards. In my experience uncomfortable but not awful take the pain killers of you need them but I found it helpful after a few days at home to stop taking them so I could feel uncomfy or I'd have over done things. Spend as much time as you can in bed, skin to skin & bf is a great excuse for this. An underarm hold is a great way to feed if its uncomfy to feed with baby on scar.

iliketea Sat 30-Mar-13 14:21:38

Get a pick up stick thing for getting stuff off the floor (it hurts to bend for a while).

Take a pillow to hold over your wound for when you cough or sneeze and to protect your tummy on the drive home.

Plenty of fruit / vegetables etc - you do not want to be constipated after a c-section (Nor i suppose after a VB smile).

Remember the housework can wait - for any other major surgery, patients are told not to lift anything heavier than a kettle for 4-6 weeks, but if it's for getting a baby out it seems forgotten that it's major surgery. So when people visit, get them to do stuff (laundry / hoovering / making beds etc - if they offer (and even if they don't), give them jobs to do!

AdmiralData Sat 30-Mar-13 14:27:32

OP - Do NOT run around like a mad woman cleaning the house and scrubbing the kitchen floors at 3am (Not that I did ... koff) Other than that just take it easy and enjoy your new baby >:] x

bishboschone Sat 30-Mar-13 14:31:00

Get your freezer filled and Tins and milk in etc . My recovery was really painful. I had cocodomol and paracetamol back to back for quite a few weeks . I know others say it wasn't painful and it won't be if you are lucky but its a major operation and will hurt certainly for the first few days .

notimefors Sat 30-Mar-13 14:33:50

I'm almost four weeks post c section and I feel utterly normal, I didn't do anything particularly to promote recovery. It probably just depends on how your body tends to heal. Good luck!

notimefors Sat 30-Mar-13 14:35:41

Actually, three weeks and four days I'll specify!

QTPie Sat 30-Mar-13 16:00:56

Arnica
Peppermint tea or capsules (can get very painful post op wind)
Take all painkillers offered
Have freezer stocked etc etc (MIL did mine - disn't need to worry about dinner for two months!)
Use a nursing pillow for bfing (or even for bottle feeding).
Get a really comfortable feeling set-up if you bf - you could be there for hours (I had a proper nursing chair and footstool, extra pillows, a little table either side for bottles of water, snacks, phone, book, tv remote etc)
Use a pillow pressed to tummy for getting in and out of bed (roll onto side, push upper body up with arms and swing legs down to get up, then same in reverse for lying down - do not use your stomach muscles).
Have a changing table at the right height so you don't need to bend to change nappies - plus DH did all nappies of the first two weeks.
I avoided doing baby baths for about a year - just too much back ache.
Really do avoid doing as much as possible for the first couple of months (and accept all help that you can): just look after baby and yourself.
But do get mobile early and try to keep mobile (without overdoing it).
Eat well: pregnancy and birth really takes it out of you - you need to start putting some nutrients back.

plannedshock Sat 30-Mar-13 17:05:47

These are fab ladies thank you!!!

Meglet Sat 30-Mar-13 17:23:06

Do as little as possible for as long as possible. If the nurses suggest you get up to change nappies while you still have a catheter in then a simple "No" works.

Herb / peppermint tea while your stomach is settling. And I second the fruit / veg fibre idea. I found soup was soothing to my post op stomach and bowels.

Don't let visitors invade, especially if you are establishing bf. If people do come round do not make them tea and stay in your pj's.

I didn't rest after my EMCS and was in pain and miserable for weeks. I didn't do a thing for at least 2 weeks after my ELCS and had a much better recovery. My body had had a major operation so I wasn't prepared to risk anything just to get back to normal. I was at the gym 12 weeks later and felt fine.

QTPie Sat 30-Mar-13 17:31:50

Yes, as per the previous poster, recovery is good if you look after yourself. I was driving after 4 weeks (check with your insurer) and back in the gym and pool at 7 weeks (very carefully! I had kept fit during pregnancy though). However I just looked after the baby and myself and didn't do anything else (if you have the money - many don't - then a cleaner and/or post-natal doula are very helpful: they take care of the rubbish whilst you look after the baby smile ).

It does take a while to recover, but a lot of that is sleep deprivation and general "recovering from bring pregnant" (take everything out of you). A complication free ELCS recovery should be fine (if you take care of yourself). Don't underestimate hormones either: becoming a first time mum is a HUGE step and hormones can knock you for six. However "life is not over" (as I thought 3 weeks post birth): sleep returns and you rebuild your life in a fab way with lots of new friends and a fab little companion smile

DevonCiderPunk Sat 30-Mar-13 17:45:21

2 ELCSs here!

Be brave and get moving ASAP - pelvic tilt/physio exercises on the bed, then walks to the loo & back once your catheter is out.

Beware trapped wind & constipation! Try and have plenty of fibre & water inamongst the celebratory chocs! Even little shuffles of your hips & bottom whenever you remember will keep you moving.

Be assertive on the ward. Use the bell as & when you need it, especially for the first 24 hours post-birth. If you are in pain, say so.

Stairs can be a bit sore. Go up & down by putting both feet on each step IYSWIM. And think about re-arranging things at home so that stuff you will need doesn't require excessive bending/stretching to get to (eg knickers & socks in the top drawer!) It might be a bit late for this, but I highly recommend one of those high-seated wing-back armchairs. They are SO easy to get in & out of. Low squidgey sofas are not at all comfy as they offer no support. If you get onto one of those with the baby in your arms, you're going to have a hell of a job getting off it again!

If you're going to breastfeed, think about using a desk/dining table sometimes - baby on a pillow on the table while you sit comfortably.

Get loads of proper rest for the first couple of weeks when you are doing your major healing and then things will speed up. Don't push yourself to the very limit from day one, or you'll slow your recovery.

Good luck! You'll be grand!

If you get a shooting pain in your shoulder blade it's trapped wind & the peppermint oil in hot water will clear it up beautifully.

500internalerror Sat 30-Mar-13 22:19:40

Face the fact that you will wear BIG KNICKERS for a while.... all attractive underwear seems to stop exactly where the scar lies grin

Def pile up pillows before you sit on sofa - you will never get up again!

Prepare for terrible trapped wind.

If possible, take wipes to hospital for toilet seat, because you won't be able to do the public-toilet-hover! Your tummy muscles won't work, & you'll just flop down onto the seat!

AdmiralData Sat 30-Mar-13 22:21:13

Oh and if you should need a little 'energy boost' I find that a banana and coffee together act better than any amount of red bull!!! x

500internalerror Sat 30-Mar-13 22:22:46

Oh and in bed, a pillow to support your belly when you lie on your side - you will still have a lot of extra tummy, & the scar will not appreciate being flopped about wink

Take it sensibly,,but don't stagnate - short walks, building up - buggy is great to lean on at first .

Caterpillar0 Sat 30-Mar-13 22:32:49

Interested in this too - thanks OP for potking

Can I add a question? I've heard about C section belts - something to hold everything in place. Can anyone comment? Are they good? Any brand recommendations?

PassNoRemark Sat 30-Mar-13 22:38:22

Wipe scar twice a day with a cotton ball/pad soaked in tea tree oil. 3 sections no infections.

And as per ^ don't over do anything in first 2-3 weeks means you'll be back and (not quite) bouncing by week 4 - go have an amazing birth!!

Panzee Sat 30-Mar-13 22:52:29

Ask the surgeon to prescribe codeine if you can take it. I wrote down when I had had the codeine, paracetamol and diclofenac and made sure I asked for the next one as soon as it was due (I did 6 hours for paracetamol and 8 hours for the others). I staggered them too. For my first section I waited till I was offered pain relief and did not take them regularly, ended up in terrible pain. The next time I asked for them whenever I was due and was never in serious pain.

Beatrixpotty Sun 31-Mar-13 22:03:29

Ask for a cot that attaches to your bed in the hospital,they do have them but the usual ones are on wheels.Much easier to pick up the baby.Don't try and do things yourself for the first 2 nights..ring the bell and get the staff to help you with picking up & nappy changes.
Get as much help as you can at home and take your painkillers regularly,don't wait to be in pain.Take things slowly,and don't rush to get back to normal,you might feel like you can do a lot early on but it will set you back the next day.Enjoy your lovely newborn and get everyone else to do the other stuff until the help runs out!

DevonCiderPunk Sun 31-Mar-13 23:02:15

YY to the shooting pains in the shoulder due to trapped wind. That was more painful than the scar! Moving & relaxing through it helped, and I was amazed at the difference that peppermint tea/cordial made - possibly placebo effect, but who cares, I trumped like a trooper!

That's another thing - do not hold your wind in on the ward! Just blame the baby grin

sunnysunnyshine Mon 01-Apr-13 12:51:24

Thanks for starting this thread OP! I'm going in for an ELCS tomorrow and feeling a bit nervous and unprepared...

Any more tips on recovery and also preparation/what to pack please?

smiler389 Sat 06-Apr-13 08:28:09

Hi, I'm possibly having a cs due to placenta praevia. Can I ask ladies with experience, are you in hospital for long and how often can you have visitors? I imagined dh would be with me all the time ...

bishboschone Sat 06-Apr-13 11:53:31

I was in quite a while due to pre eclampsia but I saw some women go out the next day. Your dh won't be allowed to stay all the time as you go on a ward with other women and babies . Is it your first?

Northernexile Sat 06-Apr-13 12:05:43

I had terrible constipation about a week afterwards, which was actually more painful than the CS <shudder>

I think it's a fairly common side effect of the pain meds. So I second plenty of water and fibre, and lactulose if necessary. The odd nice long soak in a bath is good for the wound too.

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