Although there are many wonderful things about having a baby such as snuggles with a newborn and experiencing that overwhelming rush of love when you first hold your baby, there are also a few not so pleasant aspects to giving birth that women are not always aware of. Although most women know that labour may be painful and rather messy they often don’t consider that they will have after birth bleeding which could continue for quite a while in the postpartum period. Not knowing how long you bleed for after giving birth is one of the things that many women complain about when they talk about things no one tells you about giving birth!
We also find that many women don’t realise quite how long you bleed for after giving birth. Postpartum bleeding can be inconvenient andsometimes difficult to deal with,especially as new mums already have a lot on their plate in the early days of looking after their newborn baby.
We know that sometimes women want to ask questions about bleeding after birth such what protection they need to use for postpartum bleeding and how long do you bleed for after birth. But sometimes it can be awkward for them to speak to medical professionals about these issues, so here is the Femette guide to some of those embarrassing questions:
How long do you bleed for after giving birth?
This is a really common question and one that there is no right or wrong answer to! Our bodies are all so different but the average woman could expect to bleed for anywhere between 2 – 6 weeks. The postpartum bleeding is known as lochia and it usually starts off as fairly heavy red blood which gradually fades to a lighter brown colour before it stops. It is a perfectly natural process but if you are concerned or if there are clots in your blood then let your midwife know as you may require treatment.
What sanitary protection will I need to use after giving birth?
Many women ask if they can just use normal sanitary products when they bleed after giving birth but unfortunately the answer is no – they are just not up to the job! Lochia tends to be a lot heavier than a normal period so you will need to invest in some heavy duty super absorbent maternity towels. Experienced mums also recommend buying some big knickers too or using disposable knickers that can be thrown away after use – not the most glamourous option but very practical!
How can I keep my intimate area clean after giving birth?
Sometimes the continuous bleeding after giving birth can make new mums worry about their personal hygiene and they feel concerned about the mess that bleeding can cause and the lochia smell. But, as long as you practice good hygiene in your intimate areas, this shouldn’t be a problem. Change your towel on a regular basis and always wash your hands afterwards. If you have suffered a tear or had an episiotomy you will need to take extra care of your vaginal area to help prevent infection. Using an award winning Femette to help give yourself an intimate wash is a great practical solution to any worries you may have and will keep you feeling fresh and clean.
Remember if you have a serious concern about your post-natal health or you are worried about how long you are bleeding for after giving birth please do speak to your Health visitor or doctor. Don’t feel embarrassed as they will have seen it all before and will be happy to help!