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What happens after giving birth at hospital?

(38 Posts)
RattyCatty Tue 01-Dec-15 07:48:42

FTM here at 31w so sorry if this is a stupid question...

What happens after you give birth? I know you may need stitches etc... but are you cleaned up by someone once you've had baby on your chest (hopefully?) or are you left for a bit? Do you hobble to a shower yourself? What clothes do you put on? I know you still bleed so does someone help you with that or do you hobble to shower leaving a trail of blood??!! Sorry - this only occurred to me this morning and really freaked me out!

Bupcake Tue 01-Dec-15 07:54:19

Probably depends on the hospital, but after my DCs I was stitched up and cleaned while I snuggled the baby! They have these pad things that go on the bed, so they put one of those under you for a bit. Once you're feeling up to it (after an hour, of after a couple of days), they'll help you get dressed, shower etc. I wrote pyjamas for a few days each time, but I imagine you could wear real clothes if you wanted, and if they weren't too tight.

Honestly, it's fine! Make sure your DP is good at managing visitors - if not, the midwife/nurse can do it. You may not want a load of people there while you're bleeding and sore. Otherwise, just let the nurses guide you - they're very matter-of-fact, and I didn't find it awkward at all.

KittyandTeal Tue 01-Dec-15 07:57:43

Well. The labour ward was closed shortly after I arrived so they were very busy.

I was stitched up and then left with dd and DH. Dd and I had nothing on and after they brough tea and toast no one appeared for ages.

I decided to have a shower, hobbled over trailing blood everywhere (it already looked like a bad b movie murder scene) looked at the shower and decided I couldn't work out how to use it!

DH helped me get dressed. Someone arrived to take us to postnatal ward and was shocked we'd just been left and that Dd didn't have any clothes on (I think I was in shock)

The midwife took one look at me a did a 'right lets get you sorted' dressed Dd, fed me, dosed me up with pain killers and put me to bed.

It sounds horrific written out like that but it honestly didn't feel like that. I was in shock though

PennyHasNoSurname Tue 01-Dec-15 08:01:26

DC1 (DD) - long painful labour, forceps in theatre, cut and stitched. I was "washed down" after the stitches (dh had taken dd to recovery room to wait for me), then I was wheeled to recovery for about four hpurs while the epidural wore off. After that I was wheelchaired to a room with an en suite and given time to showet and dress (into pjs!). Then I was wheelchaired to the ward and lucky enough to have a single room. Stayed for two nights as I had tested +ve for Strep B during pregnancy.

DC2 (DS) - very quick labour, 20mins or so, just G&A, no stitches. Delivery room had a bathroom so after 1.5hrs of rest after the birth I used this room to freshen up then I walked to the postnatal ward (four bed room but I was the only one in there!), could have had a six hour discharge if it wasnt for the Strep B.

DH helped me with the shower first time as I had a catheter so needed him to hold that(it was on a little frame). Second time.round I showered by myself.

imsorryiasked Tue 01-Dec-15 08:04:10

Well in my case I was stitched up and then shown to a bathroom to have a bath. Dh was with me so we were left alone (with ds). I dressed in a nightie and dressing gown (middle of the night) and big pants with pads that I'd bought with me.
As far as I know pads etc aren't supplied by hospital.
The thing I found difficult was not knowing what to do with ds when getting breakfast and showering as we had to stay in for a week. You were told not to leave him but couldn't carry a tray or fit the wheel cot in the shower room.

Bupcake Tue 01-Dec-15 08:17:40

The hospital I was in had a supply of maternity pads, but you should pack your own just in case. Plus, the hospital ones just aren't as nice as the ones you'd buy yourself! They do the job, but are very bulky - go to Mothercare and stock up in advance!

WorzelsCornyBrows Tue 01-Dec-15 08:29:36

I wasn't allowed to shower til the next day (epidural first time and EMCS second time), so DH helped wash me down (take a flannel) and then I put some pants on with a pad and got wheeled up to postnatal. I was left to shower alone the next day. It was fine and was probably the best shower of my life.

How helpful is your DP? Will he help to get you sorted? I think the midwives do what they can, but if labour ward is busy you won't get a lot of attention once the birth is over and you've been stitched up (if necessary).

RattyCatty Tue 01-Dec-15 08:56:27

Thanks for information ladies - seems to vary a lot but I'll take from this to pack lots of pads, a flannel and fully brief DH on what to expect/or not expect! I'm not great in hospitals but I imagine once at that point you don't really care! Good tip about managing visitors too... argh!

Hero1callylost Tue 01-Dec-15 09:06:24

Yep you really won't care! I was left a bit to sleep/recover from gas and air haze, then had a lovely nurse who ran a bath, helped me in, got me tea and toast and cleaned up the bed (a lot of blood - had stitches) I felt so nurtured after the shock of a fast v painful back to back labour.

HamNJam Tue 01-Dec-15 09:15:45

They made me a cup of tea and some toast, the best I'd ever had in my life! I think it's standard, but I was thrilled and so grateful. The Best Tea and Toast. Ever. grin

I had an elective cs, and after theatre and the recovery room, I got wheeled into a room on the maternity ward. Babies and DH with me all the while. They put a mattress protector sheet under me, gave me a shot of morphine (Thank you, lovely nurse!) and then left us to it. Can't remember, but there was a bathroom, so maybe I had a shower. Must have done, as I was in there for a few days.

Good luck OP flowers

Plateofcrumbs Tue 01-Dec-15 09:25:00

We spent about 6 hours in the delivery suite after DS was born (g&a during labour + episiotomy and forceps with local anaesthetic to get him out!). Was stitched up whilst holding DS, tried to feed him and then had a couple of hours sleep (after 48hrs with v little sleep!). DS hadn't fed so midwife helped me express some colostrum. Was not entirely gently encouraged to get up and shower (they needed the delivery suite back!). DH helped me stand and shower as I was very wobbly and confused through exhaustion. Once I was dressed (big pants + pad, loose joggers and a t-shirt) I was escorted to the post natal ward (either wheeled or walked, can't recall!)

lilac3033 Tue 01-Dec-15 09:25:52

I had a relatively quick first labour, with just a few stitches. After I was stitched up I was allowed to shower when I was ready. I was desperate to get in there as I felt disgusting (it's gory business...). It was the best shower ever! The only thing I wished I'd had was a nail brush. Sounds weird but I gave birth on all fours so ended up with blood under ALL my nails and it was just too much for me. I am not someone who usually bothers with a nail brush but I felt so much better after getting tidied up with one.

Whoknewitcouldbeso Tue 01-Dec-15 09:27:56

I didn't need stitches but i did need a drip so I was placed on that for about 30 mins and then hobbled to the shower. Then we were free to go.

Lemonfizzypop Tue 01-Dec-15 09:55:29

After being stitched up I was left with DH and Dd and given tea and toast and painkillers. They gave me their maternity pads but tbh they were so bulky they were very painful with my stitches and I preferred my own! After a little while they wheeled me up to the post natal ward where they kind of left us to it but they were very understaffed tbh. There was a breastfeeding support worker who came round to help dd latch on. She was so sleepy for the first day I wish I'd caught up on sleep (long labour) but I was so wired and couldn't stop looking at her!!

There was a shower on the ward which I used but TINY towels so I wish I'd brought my own- might be worth asking what your hospital's are like!

Ended up staying in for an extra day as it was the weekend and the doctors were busy with emergencies so couldn't discharge us, I was so desperate for a lovely bath and my home comforts having been in for 4 nights (I was induced).

Kittymum03 Tue 01-Dec-15 10:11:40

I would say absolutely do not forget pads! I took some but not enough (ended up as emergency c.section but still loads of stuff to come out) they had some on the ward but not many and when my partner asked for some more he got a telling off and sent to the shop shock

I also heard another woman talking to the midwife (hadn't given birth yet) 'Oh I forgot pads' the answer was 'Well youl have to get some bought in as you can't use ours!'

I was helped to have a flannel wash on the bed after being stitched and recovery time.It was awful and undignified i didnt like the 2 midwives that helped me.I just wanted to be 'me' again and wanted everybody to leave me alone sad
The next day a lovely midwife helped me hobble to the shower,left me to it (bliss) then I rang the bell & she helped me hobble back.

elliejjtiny Tue 01-Dec-15 10:56:46

DS1 was born at home

DS2 - I was checked for tears while I cuddled ds. I didn't have any so the midwife brought me a drink and some toast which I ate while DH cuddled DS. The midwife helped me put a pad and knickers on and I shuffled to the bathroom for a bath while DH dressed DS. I changed into pj's and we sat in the delivery room for a bit with me trying not to fall asleep. About 3 hours after ds was born we went home.

DS3 - same as DS2

DS4 - I had an elective section and DS4 was born at 9:47am. DS was taken to nicu while I was being stitched up. I got wheeled back to a delivery room and given tea and toast while DH went down to nicu to find out what was happening to DS. The midwife helped me out of my theatre gown, washed the top half of me with a flannel and my own shower gel, dried me and helped me put on a clean nightie. DH came back, got changed out of his scrubs and I was wheeled to the postnatal ward just as they were serving lunch at 12:30.

DS5 - I had an emergency section and DS5 was born at 1:53am. DS5 was taken to nicu and I was wheeled back to the delivery room I'd laboured in. DH went off to see DS and the midwife went off too. I was quite confused as I'd developed sepsis. DH told me later that they'd explained everything but at the time I didn't remember anything anyone said. A man came in the room and sat at a table in the corner, writing. I kept thinking that I musn't fall asleep in case I missed DH coming back and they would probably move me to the postnatal ward soon anyway. I had a drip in my arm for antibiotics and an alarm went off if I moved my arm. DH came back and told me that DS5 had been on cpap but was now breathing by himself. He got changed out of his scrubs and went home to sleep. I got tea, toast and a wash at 8am. I ended up staying in the delivery room for 2 days with a midwife with me all the time. Visiting time was unlimited there but MIL phoned DH and said she and FIL couldn't cope with our 4 older boys so DH went to collect them and I was on my own mostly. Felt a bit pathetic as the midwife kept saying that I could have anyone I wanted to visit. I felt and looked awful though and didn't want anyone except DH and the dc to see me like that. After 2 days I was wheeled to the postnatal ward.

GiraffesAndButterflies Tue 01-Dec-15 11:11:47

I didn't get toast, I feel shortchanged.

We stayed in the delivery room for a bit and they must have changed the bed because DH had a nap on it. I put some old clothes on inc maternity pad and DD and I got wheeled to a room- we were also lucky and got our own room. I honestly don't remember being cleaned up down there but I must have been- while they were stitching me up I guess. Hobbled to the shower the next morning and it wasn't too bad considering.

DIYandEatCake Tue 01-Dec-15 12:52:00

Straight after having ds, they gave me the injection for the placenta and delivered that - seemed to be very quick (wasn't allowed to have a natural 3rd stage as this was a vbac), then we were left to cuddle/feed him for a while, then they came back to do his vitamin k injection, and I was taken to the shower in a wheelchair after about an hour (no stitches luckily) - could easily have walked but that seemed to be policy. I was left to shower by myself, didn't enjoy it like others up thread as it was a very feeble shower and I felt bad about making a mess (was given a white towel as well!). But was nice to be clean - as well as the blood etc ds pooed all over my tummy when I first held him. Then it was pyjamas on and up to the ward (it was about midnight by this point) - went home next morning. Honestly you really won't care - I'm normally a very shy and private person but in labour I threw all my clothes off, yelled, wet myself on the bed, but couldn't care less at the time - you just become completely focused on what you're doing. Good luck!

TreadSoftlyOnMyDreams Tue 01-Dec-15 13:12:06

Once I was stitched up and everyone bar one midwife departed, someone changed the sheet/bed protector thingy under me. I was in a hospital gown and was given a big pad for between my legs. Oh the dignity!
I was given a sandwich [no toast either] and a cup of tea. It was about 10pm though. I'd have chewed my own arm off by midnight if I'd only gotten toast.

There was a shower room / ensuite off the delivery room so once I was a bit more "with it", DD was dressed etc I was encouraged to have a shower. DH was holding DD and I couldn't face rummaging for a washbag in my hospital bag but some lovely person had left a tube of hanging shower gel stuff like Radox and I think I washed my hair with that and just cleaned up.

There was blood but not gallons of it. Just enough like a heavy period where you stress about getting blood on the towel [supplied by the hospital but I didn't want to re-emerge with some item covered in blood]. Fine though - you just need the wherewithal to remember to take big pants and pads into the shower room with you.

I remember it was a smallish wet room with a really crappy shower curtain with a plastic chair, so it was a nightmare to keep stuff dry in the room ! Best shower of my life though grin

Midwife was in the room or popping in and out the whole time. It was a fairly quiet night for them I think but until you are off the labour ward they were keeping an eye to make sure you didn't keel over.

My tip would be is to get a ziploc bag with an all in one shampoo/body shampoo bottle, toothbrush and toothpaste, a comb for your hair, bobbles in case you leave it to shower the next day, couple of maternity towels and a pair of big knickers so you can take it all into the shower room with you. There is no way you are going to be putting on make-up and there is usually no where to put anything down

wonkylegs Tue 01-Dec-15 13:12:32

I was left to sleep with baby tucked in my nightie and DH by my side. I'd been in labour for days then had an emergency section so was truly exhausted. When I woke I had toast & tea (best tasting in the world at that point) I had a shower several hours later, DH helped me.
I had maternity pads put on the bed under me and then after the shower put big knickers on and then put my own pads on and a fresh nightie ( it was a very hot summer and way to hot for pjs in the ward) I only got dressed just before I went home a few days later.

percythepenguin Tue 01-Dec-15 13:54:14

After DS1 I was stitched in the delivery room, had tea and toast and was walked to the bath by the midwife and told to use the buzzer when I was ready to get out, I'd vomited I'm my hair during labour but was so keen to get back to DS that I forgot and didn't wash it! Was different with DS 2 as I had a third degree tear so was taken to theatre to have it repaired (after cuddles) and wasn't allowed to have a shower until the next day. By the time my catheter had been removed I was desperate for a shower and convinced I'd have no problems showering myself, a HCA insisted on going I the shower with me and I was very glad she did, I was a LOT more wobbly than I expected and there's no way I would've managed on my own. So my tips are Remember to tie your hair back in labour and take any help you're offered!

totty12mum Tue 01-Dec-15 14:18:49

Got no help and no food or drink, was stitched. Midwife disappeared. Came back and moaned because I had bled on the floor trying to get myself to toilet. Discharged myself after 6 hours as just wanted to get home.

jamtartandcustard Tue 01-Dec-15 14:27:41

I can't fully remember, it was all a bit of a daze but I do remember the midwives ran me a bath which was freezing cold! I never needed stitches so can't answer that. In all honesty, I have 2 natural births and I can't even recall the placenta being delivered! You just sit there in complete awe of this tiny little being that, after hours of agony, you've actually given birth too. The midwives just go about and do whatever needs doing and tell you what to do and when

AGrinWithoutACat Tue 01-Dec-15 15:08:16

My births were all straightforward, had a bath after DC1, shower after DC2 and a bed wash from the midwives after DC3, would not recommend the bath again - just ick! Shower was fine till I walked back into the delivery room and fainted! Bed wash was the best option but DC3 was the cleanest, quickest birth of them.

After birth and placenta we were left to enjoy each other for a bit, had both a pad between my legs and what looks like a puppy training mat to sit on. Think the wash options were offered after about 30 mins and toast after that.

Wheelchair down to postnatal each time

Take a small wash bag with you inc hairbrush, the ever glamorous disposable knickers, maternity towels and comfy lightweight PJs in an easy to access bag for the labour suite and you are probably sorted. Throw in a nappy, vest and sleepsuit for baby, I packed 0-3 month sizing as unless you know you are having a tiny baby you prob won't get long out of newborns (in my case DCs 2&3 would never have got into that size!)

ACatCalledFang Tue 01-Dec-15 18:51:01

I had an EMCS on the Monday morning. Spent the afternoon in recovery with a drip (kept stalling and setting an alarm off), wheeled up to the post-natal ward late afternoon/early evening. I was offered a sandwich lunch in recovery, rather than tea and toast, and was washed between my legs by a midwife that night.

Was allowed out of bed Tuesday morning, helped into my own nightie, but was never given the chance to shower! Nobody told me whether I could (I wasn't sure because of the dressing) or where the showers were, and it didn't feel right to leave DS - ducking out for toilet trips was awkward enough. So I got my shower when we got home on the Wednesday, having made do with wet wipes and flannels. I have never felt so grubby in my life!

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