For new mothers (particularly those experiencing motherhood for the first time) the first few months can be incredibly overwhelming. You have, after all, spent the last 9 months building up to this moment and now that your baby is actually here, it can be difficult to comprehend what comes next.
That’s one of the reasons why the postpartum process is so often riddled with depression and uncertainty but it doesn’t have to be as long as you know what to expect and have a firm timeline in place to work from.
1. Getting used to being a mother
There is a certain amount time needed to adjust to having a baby in your life. This could be a time when you come into your own, or you could feel confused and unsure of what to do next and how to live your life as a new mother. Take some time to spend time with your baby and develop a bond and the rest should fall into place naturally.
Although much of your attention will now obviously be directed towards looking after your baby, you should consciously take steps to look after your own physical and mental health too. How? Eat healthily (where possible), get plenty of fresh air and exercise (to a point) and be sure to see your friends and family when the time is right. The last thing you want to be doing right now is isolating yourself.
3. Documents and records
There will likely be a lot of documentation and records, such as doctors’ records, birth certificates and more. It can all be a lot to keep track of, particularly if you’re doing it alone. As well as ensuring everything is stored away properly, also take this time to look through the practices in the hospital. In rare cases there can be complications at birth which could be cause for a Cerebral Palsy medical negligence case, this is where negligence from a professional occurred during birth, leading to brain damage to the baby. So make sure to keep detailed records of what happened and relevant documents in case you need them later on.
4. Postpartum depression
Postpartum depression is a common feeling after having a baby. Going through so many changes in hormones and physical stress can lead to feelings of isolation, depression and loneliness. If you are feeling any of this, even slightly, contact a professional to look after your mental health and talk to family and friends. You might be surprised to learn that they’ve been through the same thing and might have some unique insights that could really help you.
5. Keeping up with appointments
Keeping up with any doctor’s appointments following the birth is as important as before the birth. Check in with your doctor to ensure you and the baby are in full health and everything is as it should be. Once the first 6 months are clear you’re probably out of the woods but always keep your doctor aware of anything that doesn’t feel right. They are there to help!