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C-section recovery

(16 Posts)
GenevaJoey Wed 09-Mar-16 14:21:05

I am only 28 weeks with my first baby, so haven't discussed birth plans or anything with my doctor yet, but I am already getting slightly anxious about having a c-section. I am giving birth in Switzerland, and have been told anecdotally that the csection rate is high, and loads of women have them. I'm not desperate to have a vaginal birth per se, i just want a healthy outcome for me and my baby, but I am worried about recovery time for a c-section.

I live abroad, and due to disability/caring responsibilities my in laws cant come and help, and my parents will only come for a short while. My OH is keen and supportive, but he has unavoidable work commitments in the month after my due date, which means his paternity leave will be odd days. He also wants to go back to uk for a stag do of a good friend, which will be over several days, 4 weeks after the due date. I want him to go, but am a bit worried especially if I am restricted with driving/lifting etc.

We are also about to move to a house which is a little more rural than where we are now, and little less connected by public transport. There is a bakery within easy walking distance, but that's about it. Everything else is a bus ride away, and it's about 15 minute walk to bus stop.

I have some friends here, but not really good ones, and noone I know well enough or long enough to rely on.

So, after c-section, were you very restricted with what you could do? Could you bathe baby and carry/lift them ok? Could you drive?

The hospital has a good reputation, and you would likely be encouraged to stay in for a week after the birth, so it's after that i'm most concerned about.

divafever99 Wed 09-Mar-16 14:37:37

I have had 2 emergency c sections, 2011 & 2015. I was advised both times:
-No driving for 6 weeks, and then after that time ensure you can do an emergency stop before you drive
-Don't carry anything heavier than your baby for 6 weeks.
-Don't push a pram/supermarket trolley/hoover for 2 weeks.

A week after both I felt able to take a small trip out such as a lunch out and a little walk round a couple of shops with dh.
I had food shopping delivered.
My mum helped with cleaning.
My friend drove me to baby clinic so I could get dd weighed.
I bathed both dd's in the sink so I didn't have to bend down to the baby bath.
I changed dd's nappies on the bed as I found it difficult to get up from the floor for the first 2 weeks.
I felt able to drive at 6 weeks post section, and once I was able to get out and about I resumed shopping/cleaning etc.
Hope this helps, good luck and congratulations on your pregnancy. flowers

GenevaJoey Wed 09-Mar-16 15:03:53

Thanks Diva, that is really helpful. The driving may well be a problem, it seems. May have to think of a plan!

welshweasel Wed 09-Mar-16 15:16:29

I'm 6 weeks post c section. No issues caring for baby or bathing him etc from the start. Walking into town for lunch on day 5. I was able to push the pram at that point but it was a bit uncomfortable so I let DH do it. Fine with baby in sling at a week. Went back to driving after 2 weeks, when DH went back to work although I think it would have been OK after a week if I'd had no choice. The no driving thing for 6 weeks is nonsense by the way. So long as you can drive, including doing emergency stop, without any pain, you're fine to drive. Everyone's different!

divafever99 Wed 09-Mar-16 15:16:42

Yes, especially if you are planning to move to a rural area. Not sure about Switzerland but I was told that my car would be invalid if I drove before 6 weeks. Also think about if you use public transport it may not be accessible with a pram and you would have to lift it which you shouldn't do post section.

divafever99 Wed 09-Mar-16 15:18:22

Sorry should: say car insurance would be invalid

Icklepickle101 Wed 09-Mar-16 15:21:56

Everyone is different but 4 days after mine I was lifting baskets of washing and cleaning the house. Started driving just before 3 weeks and had to carry the car seat up and down the stairs as we live in a maisonette.

Id say after 2 weeks I was pain free and fairly independent again but I appreciate I was very lucky as my friend is 7 weeks in and still not allowed to drive and just had her wound restitched.

PoshPenny Wed 09-Mar-16 15:27:41

It was the not being able to drive that I found the hardest. Everything else was manageable, I think I would not carry the Hoover or a basket of washing upstairs but leave that for him to do when he got home. I felt up to driving after 5 weeks.

LastOneDancing Wed 09-Mar-16 15:29:11

I was feeling ok after 10 days and drove at 3 weeks.

I dont want to rock the boat but even without a section I still wouldn't be too happy with my DH buggering off on a jolly for several days leaving me without any support and a 4 week old, particularly if he felt he couldnt take time off for paternity. Are you ok with it?
Could he either just go for 1 or 2 nights or could that be when your parents visit?

GenevaJoey Wed 09-Mar-16 16:02:04

Yes, I wonder if this is the problem, everyone experiences the csection recovery differently, so it makes it very difficult to plan for. Really would not like to be stuck in the house for 6 weeks, dependent on husband for leaving the house. Sounds a bit grim.

I may be getting ahead of myself anyway, and maybe I won't need one...

LastOneDancing - I am a bit worried about it, and husband knows that. He is not selfish, but it is a good friend of his, and he has arranged the stag do around the times husband says he definitely can't do - ie the month of the birth, and the two weeks or so before it, and I don't want to be unreasonable/put my foot down, when I just dont know.

We've left it that he can book and pay and go, but if it looks like I might not be coping, then he has to be prepared to cancel and lose the money, and he says he is. His sister may be able to come out and visit at the time, which would solve the problem (although not the driving problem), so hopefully will be ok. I am very reulctant to commit to any decisions after the birth at the moment, as I just can't imagine how I am going to cope, how it's going to be!

katienana Wed 09-Mar-16 16:08:03

You might not recover quickly from a vaginal birth, I didn't! Most births at straightforward but all sorts can happen and you can't predict it. I don't think your dh should be planning on going on a stag do particularly when you have limited family support.

pitterpatterrain Wed 09-Mar-16 16:11:43

I found the first week the hardest as found it a struggle to pick up DD and get in a good position for feeds through the night

I was able to get out and about for short trips before 6 weeks - I walked to her MW appointment roughly 15-20 min with her in a sling at 2 weeks which I couldn't believe I would be able to do when they first told me the appointment and location

Main thing if he is going away will be making sure the house is stacked up with easy meals and snacks as the last thing you will want is to have to traipse out for food when you are tired

MrsBenWyatt Wed 09-Mar-16 18:34:12

I am a week past my second section (this is DC3).

I was discharged the day after the op and I was very sore for three days (couldn't do stairs or get out of bed easily). On day 5 I was able to push the pram to collect DD from school and now, on day 7, I am pretty much fine to potter about, apart from bending over and picking up heavy weights (DS1 wink). I am not up to walking long distances just yet, but all the baby care stuff is fine, as are short walks etc.

Obviously, everyone is different, but as a PP said, recovery from a VB is not always straightforward.

DH going on a stag do when I had a newborn wouldn't go down well with me, though!

Buckinbronco Wed 09-Mar-16 18:41:05

It's not just different people having different recoveries it's different ways the c section can go- smooth and planned is usually better than Emergency with complications.

I had Emergency with complications (pph) I would walk in 2 days, sit up in about 4. Walk around shops etc after about a week.

Insurance told me I was cleared to drive whenever GP agreed and I felt able, and GP said drive whenever you feel ok to. As it happened, I didn't start driving again for 6 weeks and did struggle (I kept stalling as I couldn't press down hard enough on the pedals) but got used to it quickly

Rinceoir Wed 09-Mar-16 18:46:36

I had an emcs with a bad post op infection, spent 10 days in hospital. Our family are all in Ireland. My parents stayed for a week when I got out, inlaws came for a few days the week after and I was on my own after that. I was fine to look after baby on my own after 2 weeks. I had prepared and frozen meals before she was born, and when the family weren't here we are those. I was able to walk with the pram, put on and hang out washing etc no problem at that stage. Incidentally my husband went to a wedding of a close friend of his in Eastern Europe for a weekend when she was 5 weeks. We arranged for my mother to stay, but it was more to keep me company.

MrsBenWyatt Wed 09-Mar-16 18:53:32

To add - I also had a Cat 1 section with DC2 and was also up and about in a week.

I agree with a PP who said that the sooner you get up, the quicker you start to heal. This is certainly my experience. My MW said it's something to do with the movement improving blood flow and reducing healing time, but that might be nonsense!

The only difference between recovery of ELCS and CAT1 CS in my experience was the number of nights I had to stay in hospital.

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