5 things you don’t know about giving birth via a Caesarean section

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Trying to decide between having a normal birth and a Caesarean section? The general consensus is that it’s preferable to give birth naturally unless you have a condition that complicates things (or if you’re rushed into an emergency Caesarean section). That said, some women do opt for planned Caesarean section for various reasons. In this article, we shed some light on what happens during Caesarean section, and discuss 5 things you probably don’t know about giving birth via a Caesarean section!

#1: You’ll still experience bleeding

Contrary to popular belief, you’ll still experience postpartum bleeding when you have a C-section. Your baby might not be delivered vaginally, but your uterine wall still has to heal after your placenta detaches. On top of that, the uterine lining that thickens throughout your pregnancy also starts shedding once you’ve delivered your baby. All in all, your bleeding should last up to a maximum of six weeks.

#2: The pain is more intense

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Some people have the notion that getting a C-section will reduce the pain of childbirth. While it’s true that you don’t actually feel any pain (just some pressure in your abdomen!) while you’re undergoing surgery, you do get more intense pain during recovery.

Here’s a heads-up: even after you’re discharged from the hospital, laughing, coughing, sneezing, and doing anything else that activates your abdomen will hurt. And while women heal pretty quickly from vaginal childbirth, the pain that you get with a C-section tends to last longer. Of course, you’ll have pain meds to help ease you through the process.

#3: You might get constipation

It’s tough to pass motion after a C-section, because your abdomen will still be in the midst of recovery. To cope with this, start taking stool softeners as soon as you’ve delivered, and drink plenty of water.

#4: You should get up as soon as possible

We know that this is pretty counter-intuitive, especially since you’ve just gone through a surgery. But here’s the thing: the longer you stay bedridden, the more gas pain and blood clots will develop. When you’re inactive, this also affects your bowel movement. As soon as your doctor says it’s okay for you to do so, get up from bed and start moving around!

#5: You might not get skin on skin contact

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If you want to hold your baby immediately after delivering (this is known as Skin to Skin), you’ll need to specifically request for it. Bear in mind that hospitals have their own policies, and some do not allow Skin to Skin in the operating theatre. Seeing as most hospitals will want to monitor babies born via C-section, you may not get to see or hold your baby until a few hours after the birth.

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