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What happens after giving birth? What was your experience?

88 replies

mrsc1987 · 04/05/2020 20:26

As a FTM i was wondering late last night what actually happens when you go to a ward after giving birth? Do they show you how to feed and how often and how to change the baby and leave you to it or do they come and help several times?
Is there a kitchen to get babys bottles (if not breastfeeding) do they come around often and give help and advice? What actually happens? What were your experiences if you're not a FTM?

OP posts:
BrooHaHa · 04/05/2020 20:30

I was in a private room and no one showed me anything. They put the baby on the breast for me twice and then I got to go home. With breastfeeding though you just feed whenever they want to feed so no timings etc are necessary.

Cantchooseaname · 04/05/2020 20:31

In my experience, I was left to get on with it.
There was a buzzer if I got stuck, but generally left to own devices.
Food was brought to ward for you to help yourself- I was unable to walk due to birth injury (nerve damage), even if I had been willing to leave baby and walk down ward.
And it was soooooo hot!
I think of I’d wanted help and asked, they would have shown more.
It all worked out in the end!!

SpillTheTeaa · 04/05/2020 20:39

I was left to get on with it but was reassured to press the buzzer if there was anything I needed or anything I needed to know. I pressed the buzzer when DS has his first poo to see if it was normal and they come in very quickly. I was on a ward and formula feeding.
They have a little kitchen on the maternity ward (a few actually) and fridges and your breast milk or formula (pre made bottles) go into a bag which is wrote on and sealed so you know if anyone has tried to go into it etc.
It's a tea making facility too. If FF I would take a flask and fill it with hot water and take it to your room you're in and take a few of there disposable bottles (we were encouraged to not take our own bottles or tubs of formula as no facility to sterilise them). Once you have it in your room if FF you only have to grab the milk from the fridge and not make multiple trips like me because I had baby brain! Grin

SpillTheTeaa · 04/05/2020 20:42

Also on how to change a nappy I had lots of nephews and a niece so I was confident how to do that but you put baby's nappy on in delivery room and they do watch you to help if needed. You're not automatically whisked off to a ward. I was in delivery room for 4 hours after DS was born before I got moved to the ward z

SpillTheTeaa · 04/05/2020 20:42

Have not had fgs

Willow4987 · 04/05/2020 20:44

I was left to it both times. They do come round regularly to do checks on you both so you can ask then or buzz

Generally they don’t show you unless you ask

Not sure r.e. Bottles but I’m sure they will help. Most hospitals have little premade ones with a sterilised teat they can give you (or take your own in, most brands do them)

ElphiasDoge · 04/05/2020 20:46

DS was looking for milk so they helped me put him to the breast before I had my stitches. He didn’t have much so DH took him and I had my stitches. We had a double bed in a room in the midwife unit. DS wasn’t really taking hardly anything so they popped in and out helping me and when he really didn’t seem to have had anything they showed me how to hand express. They popped in and out through the night and in the morning when he still hadn’t really had anything they offered to take him and give 10ml formula. They asked if I wanted SMA or Cow & Gate and I had no idea. Then he was quite sick and they very quickly got the doctors down and whisked him up to Neonatal. I was always consulted and informed.

Didn’t show us changing or anything but we knew how to do that. They checked my abdomen and my bleeding.

There was a kitchen where you could make tea and toast and microwave things. It’s stocked with cereals and the basics and there was a donation box.

On the post natal ward I hardly saw them as I was always visiting DS on NICU but same system for adult food. Not sure about the formula situation. I had formula with me in the car but in the moment I forgot all about it.

DS couldn’t feed as he was too poorly and the midwives on the ward and on NICU showed me how to express. I did go on to breastfeed and still going 10 months later.

Congratulations and hope it goes smoothly!

YouJustDoYou · 04/05/2020 20:48

Emergency c sec for me. We took the nhs classes before hand so knew how-to change a nappy, how to bathe, what kind of poo to expect etc. I was on the trauma ward after birth and was left to it with the first. 2nd and3rd they came and checked how we were doing etc but they are very busy so left to get on with it.

Sb131216 · 04/05/2020 20:49

After csection I stayed up there for a while and baby was not allowed to go to dh just plonked on my boob
Went up to the ward and given a private room, just fluke and how it ended up being. Anyway, they did some checks and brought meds but that was it until more checks.
There was a dinner choice leaflet you select and my fb went to get this for me.
Not shown anything but even though a ftm I've worked in childcare and helped on a maternity ward so knew apart from breastfeeding
If you need help you press your buzzer which I did as I didn't think she was latched properly
They nip in and out a few times but you are just left to it really which I liked being in my own room.

First poop is thick black tar like and you may need to wipe a fair bit to clean baby up. Practise changing on a Teddy or toy if you are concerned
I believe it's still the general idea that baby wears one more layer than you but please somebody challenge me if that's now wrong.. The wards are very warm usually even when it's winter

The rest was all a bit of a blur but that's what I can remember from dd

Fred578 · 04/05/2020 20:51

My first baby they helped me with breastfeeding because it wasn’t going well! They were actually very helpful with that. I can’t remember if they showed me how to do the nappy but I coped fine. The second baby they just left me to it.

Beamur · 04/05/2020 20:53

My experience was quite a few years ago, but I found the midwives to be really helpful, practical and kind. I was chivvied along when I was being a bit feeble, fed well and supported in breast feeding. They weren't as keen to help with mixed or formula feeding though. I think I did get a lesson in washing and changing the baby too!

Gerdticker · 04/05/2020 21:11

I had my first DC in a midwife only unit that isn’t connected to a hospital. The aftercare compared to a hospital ward was totally different and lovely!

My husband and I stayed in a private room and I had regular checks on me. In the night I had a bath in the bathroom along the corridor, and they heard me and came to check and have a chat. There were only two mums staying in the place that night so it was peaceful - not remotely unusual there apparently!

In the morning I left my husband with baby and went to the kitchen where the midwife made me tea and toast and cereal, and we had a lovely chat, it was so civilised!

I asked them for help with the latch breastfeeding about eight times as I kept getting it wrong - this help is invaluable so never be afraid to ask, once you’re home you’re on your own!

They had pre warned us to bring food for the dad as they aren’t meant to give them anything. But they let me sneak him some tea and toast!

There’s lots of reasons to look into midwife units in your area, but the aftercare was an amazing reason to add to my decision making

SpacePug · 04/05/2020 21:28

Hi there, I was in a private room due to baby being poorly when born. I had a buzzer for whenever I needed to ask for help with feeding etc.i learnt about how to change them during ante natal classes beforehand. Good luck you'll be just fine the midwifes were brilliant

TorysSuckRevokeArticle50 · 04/05/2020 21:34

I had GD so had to stay overnight so they could do 3 sugar checks on baby.

Had DD, got stitched up, DH held DD while I cleaned up and got changed then we went to the ward.

DH went home and I was left to it. Nurses stopped in immediately for a sugar check, then half way through the night and again in the morning.

I waddled to the loo and shower pushing DD in her bassinet with me.

In the morning I asked about breakfast and was pointed to a kitchen to make my own. Toast, cereal and yoghurts plus tea and coffee facilities.

I then asked every 5 minutes when I could leave as was fed up of being there, too hot, hungry and didn't seem much point being there. They finally gave the green light so I called a taxi. Chucked everything in my suitcase, plugged DD into her car seat, lugged it all downstairs and into the taxi by myself, no one even asked me to sign out or anything and went home.

DontStandSoClose · 04/05/2020 21:36

I had a long labour with my first, gave birth at 4pm and was moved to the ward at 7.30pm, my husband had to leave at 8pm as visiting time ended. I didn't actually want to stay but as it was a Sunday afternoon there was no doctor to do the checks on the baby to let me leave. No one actually came to check me at all never mind help (I think they were meant to take my temp and bp but didn't). The next day I was up early and just wanted to go home, my husband returned at 10am when visiting time started and we sat waiting all day for someone to check the baby and discharge me. It was completely pointless me being there.

Second time I outlined to the midwife when I could still hold a conversation in labour that I did not want to stay in for any length of time. I gave birth at 8am and went to a ward at about 11am. Someone discharged me at 12.30pm and we waited until 3pm for the paediatrician to do the baby check. Again no one actually checked me apart from my blood pressure to discharge me. Luckily my husband could stay as it was the daytime so I wasn't stuck alone for hours.

I didn't have any help with the baby or feeding in hospital, it was a case of "off you go". I breastfed but I think the midwife I saw for appointments told me to buy those ready made bottles with teats just in case, I don't think they provided any facilities to sterilise bottles in the hospital from what I remember.

ContentLentilWeaver · 04/05/2020 21:40

The best advice I got was to press the buzzer every time I was going to try to breastfeed and someone would help me. I did exactly that, and it was incredibly helpful. We were on the post natal ward for approx 24 hours before being discharged.

On the other hand, no one explained the food situation and I missed lunch! Thankfully DH had arrived by dinner time and grabbed me a plate. There was a dining room with a fridge stocked with sandwiches, crackers and cheese, yoghurts etc.

OccasionalNachos · 04/05/2020 21:41

I was in a private room and was shown how to change a nappy. I had already breastfed in the delivery room, but when I was struggling to get a good latch I just pressed the buzzer and someone came to help. There was a kitchen on the ward but I only used it to get water, it had all food prep facilities though. Someone came into my room ever my couple of hours to either check me or the baby, and auxiliaries were also in and out emptying the bins etc. I was glad to get home for some peace and quiet!

CoolNoMore · 04/05/2020 21:46

Help with feeding or changing nappies?! Nope. I didn't even realise I could use the buzzer for anything other than an absolute emergency. I don't think there was a kitchen, nobody told me anything. I didn't think to ask, but they were at capacity and clearly very busy. I didn't mind at the time at all, but looking back I feel a bit stupid.

JohnnyMcGrathSaysFuckOff · 04/05/2020 21:47

Completely left to get on with it.

They came and checked my abdomen and praised me for tolerating the examination - turned out they wrongly thought I'd had a c section.

Other than that, left to it. Babies both in NICU, I was allowed to visit but not given any info or consulted about any decisions such as medical procedures on babies. Left to drift in and out as I wanted. Once, one of my babies was moved to another ward without me being told and I walked up and down the corridors searching for her and trying not to cry. I supplied all my own food. I had given birth on a toilet floor and was totally alone as it was a huge snowstorm and roads blocked. Quite a few of the staff were friendly, some not, but they basically just manned the reception desk. They weren't actually there to help as far as I could see.

I got through by putting one foot in front of the other for 2 weeks. I was so thankful to leave.

FrancesHaHa · 04/05/2020 21:55

Left to get on with it. In fact no one referenced the buzzer, and now I think of it I thought it was for emergencies so never pressed it. Leaving me trying to pick up a newborn baby out of her cot straight after having a C Section and failing miserably. Also leading to her losing too much weight as she wasn't being fed enough and had to be rehospitalised.

Definitely ask for help as much as you need!

FrancesHaHa · 04/05/2020 21:59

Just to add, as I first time mum the whole midwifery experience was very much as though you were assumed you know what you were doing. Very little explained through out pregnancy, birth and post natally and slightly being made to feel stupid for asking perfectly rational questions.

mrscatmad31 · 04/05/2020 22:07

With my first the midwives made sure I was feeding baby ok on the delivery ward and then on the maternity ward they really didn't care and barely looked at us. The second time as soon as they saw me feeding baby they decided we could go home that night which was what I wanted, hospitals are hotter than the sun! (And both mine were winter babies)

BeMorePacific · 04/05/2020 22:44

I just used the buzzer. I had a C sec and still had a catheter in. So felt a bit helpless.
I also buzzed with the first poo nappy... because it was everywhere and I didn’t know where to start with it haha!
I’ll be a lot more confident this time around. Staff will be happy to help x

Megan2018 · 04/05/2020 22:52

I had a brilliant time, don’t believe all the horror stories.

I had my baby in the busiest week of the year so it was rammed. I stayed in the delivery room for 13hrs after birth as there were no beds on the ward. So I had privacy and space.
Moved on to ward about 8pm, it was noisy and busy but everyone was lovely. my baby had to have her blood sugar checked regularly as I had GD so they were in and out with that, then we had a hearing test and another check over of baby. I was BF and had help with latch and positions from a specialist BF support person who was on all night.

I opted to transfer to a maternity unit for 3 days postnatal care and BF support which was outstanding.

It was all bloody brilliant, I’d never held a baby before and they showed me everything.

Sadie789 · 04/05/2020 22:57

I had a wonderful experience with everyone in the run up to the birth and during, right up to the moment they wheeled me into the ward...

Then it was horrendous. Left alone, no one came to see me except routine checks, had to ask for help, buzzer didn’t work, lay in blood and fluid soaked sheets all night, no help with breastfeeding, didn’t know I could go and get my own water so sat there dying of thirst, when I did get to speak to a midwife or HCA they were harassed, unhelpful and dismissive.

Other women in the ward were noisy, inconsiderate with awful even less inconsiderate partners and seemingly huge noisy families.

Could not wait to get out of there both times.

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