Even if everything will always go fast today, in childbirth, so in the period after the birth mothers need time and rest to recover. This article is what mothers can do in childbirth, so that all wounds heal well.

New mother: Do not start by early!

Mother baby sleep postpartum

Photo: © iStockphoto.com, zergkind

Six to eight weeks it takes to childbed. Almost not enough time for the physical and emotional upheavals that experiences a new mother at this time. And yet one would have when looking at the reality rather by a "day bed" speak. For many women make it difficult in our breathless meritocracy to slow their pace of life as much as is needed now. After a few days the majority of women would like again "function" and possibly no longer be dependent on aid. The making body and soul but often with impunity: fatigue, postpartum depression, breastfeeding problems or chest inflammation and lochia Jam are possible consequences when a new mother wants to start again too soon. Urbia gives tips on how the time of childbed can be to a new awareness of life experience. Here also the view of postpartum practices of earlier times and other cultures helps. There is also information about what happens in the body of the young mother at this time and what you do well, so that the wounds of birth - the emotional - heal well.

The early postpartum

During the first ten days after birth, the physical and emotional change is strongest. The rigors of pregnancy and childbirth become noticeable, the concentration of the pregnancy hormone drops sharply, the womb recedes quickly. The necessary aftershocks torment the woman sometimes violently, the weekly flow is still quite strong and the milk production needs to pick up. Especially with the first child is the fact that you have to get used to the often strange feeling of motherhood and practice dealing with the delicate new family member. To all this afford needs a woman (and her partner) above all: peace, shield and a huge portion of healthy selfishness'.

So that the uterus can regress good and the milk flow gets under way, a woman should be in the first week after birth much. "One should breastfeed lying quietly, so you can rest and during breastfeeding"Advises Judith Kulesza, midwife and health practitioners from Dusseldorf. To really spend the first day completely undisturbed, they simply recommends the answering machine with the name to discuss the birth and the weight of the child. "So learn all callers what they want to know the most urgent and the parents remain undisturbed." In no case should now take in a day die down and perhaps even entertain you with this.

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The most beautiful thing in the early postpartum period are the undisturbed cuddly hours of parents (and possibly. Siblings) with the newborn. Therefore, many midwives call this time "Baby honeymoon", When visitors will come, they may be asked, hot food, a cake or a pot of coffee brought along. "The important thing is to accept offers of help where they can get some, and quiet to ask on their own initiative"So Kulesza. "A mother should also necessarily go to sleep, even if the baby is sleeping!" The cardinal sin of many mothers is that they used this time to do the housework. "And then they wonder if they are completely exhausted after a short time"Warns the midwife. "One can not imagine beforehand how extremely tough the first few weeks with baby are",

Support for the new mother

Although women had to work harder physically in earlier times than today and there was little space for their needs, they then often knew better what was most important for a new mother. There was a rule that a woman her child six weeks "not under the eaves (= gutter) by wear" could, not should go out of the house. Until the 20th century it was also customary in Germany that neighbors the new mother have brought a pot of soup a day in the first period. So she could gain strength, did not have to cook, and her family was full. This idea could girlfriends or relatives to take up today. If a woman has no way to be every day in childbirth supply them with food, they can cook and freeze during the last weeks before the due date for stock.

In many so-called primitive peoples daily help for the newly given birth is still life even today. The Mafa women in northern Cameroon, the women of the family provide the new mother with herbs for healing wounds. These contain essential oils to disinfect and regression that are applied externally and internally. The family cooks for the new mother pear soup (the ficin contained therein prevents inflammations, promotes breastfeeding and helps with intestinal problems after birth). In addition, the new mother is completely shielded from the outside world and visitors, children and men are cared for by other relatives. In Guinea the new father of the woman pouring the fat of a specific, existing valuable rainforest bird with which they can maintain their body after birth. Otherwise, the neighbors take care and care of the new mother.


With us the follow-midwife has replaced the healing knowledgeable neighbors. During the first ten days after the birth of every woman is entitled to a daily visit to the midwife. Until the baby eight weeks old can ask 16 times the midwife for advice and help mothers beyond. When breastfeeding difficulties or nutritional problems, the mother can then absorb even eight times to contact their midwife. Further visits are possible on prescription of a doctor.

The midwife looked at, among other things, whether the uterus good regresses if the dam heal easily if the lochia gets going and how breastfeeding is anlässt. It maintains the navel of the baby, weighs it and gives advice on baby care. Also for fear or psychological distress associated with the birth she is a good contact. The follow-paid health insurance.


Lochia and aftermath

The lochia usually takes eight weeks. He is on the first days strong and sometimes contains bloody lumps, but leaves soon after. He becomes brighter as the weeks until it is eventually clear. After cesarean week river takes just as long and has the same course. Albeit often somewhat weaker or is in between a day or two, because a curettage was made under the OP already. Depending on whether you breastfeed the week flow can be replaced after only six weeks ago by the first rule. But it is bleeding after only three weeks suddenly stronger and bright red, it is often stress, which has made the internal wounds in the uterus off again. If this is only temporary the case, it is sufficient to shift back a gear. this bleeding lasted longer, the gynecologist should look.

It should be used for the lochia only napkins and tampons. Also a shower is better than swimming, because then not so easy to get germs and with the water in the vagina can ascend into the uterus from there. Comes several days not weeks River, and perhaps occur fever, back or face pain, a woman has to turn to the follow-midwife because a week River Jam may be. Most help certain exercises and naturopathic support to get this complication under control. In the first days after birth have been easier or more powerful aftershocks, especially while breastfeeding. They help the uterus to fade well. For the pain helps best a hot water bottle or the Milchbildungstee whose herbs have also anticonvulsant.

Care of perineal suturing and cesarean scar

After an episiotomy or -riss some new mother sneaks initially badly bent through the area. "Check this by no means a floating ring, as is unfortunately still often the case"Warns midwife Judith Kulesza. "Thus, the eh overstretched by pregnancy and childbirth pelvic floor is further strained." The possible result: the dam seams can be opened under the strain. was much better, only to charge a buttock when sitting and to change every few minutes. Moreover, hygiene is crucial. "One should rather too often take a shower as too rare. For inflammations arnica compresses help." Even the toilet can burn in common with a dam wound initially. It helps to have ready lukewarm water in a pot that you can run urinating on vagina and perineum. In women with cesarean section is more of a bowel movement, which makes them problems because of injured abdominal muscles. Here is important loose stools. "Klemmt" it nevertheless help suppositories of petroleum jelly or mini-enemas to avoid the painful presses. The caesarean scar may initially be a little red or swollen and feels totally numb. Cooling or sterile wound powder relieve irritation. The onset of pain at the scar on or begins to fester, they should not hesitate to go to their doctor woman.

Bowel problems?

Shortly after birth, is from now on equal a lot of space in your stomach. Above all, the intestine has no hold, because the usual pressure on its side walls through the solid and large uterus is gone. The result is almost always initially constipation and bloating. A fixed Bauchbinde helps: You fold a solid cloth (large towel, small children's bed cloth, etc.) and suggests it tightly around the abdomen. The intestine gets so again some support from outside, the symptoms subside. After a few days of bowel gets used to the altered space conditions.

The late postpartum: When will Rückbildungsgymnastik?

The hormonal change is also now far from complete. Many women find this to hot flashes and night sweats, which still can continue for some months. But even if now the week river gradually recedes, the birth wounds barely hurt and you have already won some practice in dealing with the baby, you should make the first eight weeks as little as possible in the home. So the apartment is not totally in chaos, has become the "An action-per-day"very proven principle for many parents: It is enough to meet every day a tiny role in the household. So only the living room us nothing else, for example, sucked in a day. The following day, you can even wipe the countertops in the kitchen. One day later are tub and sink in the bathroom off, etc. This process takes only a few minutes and give mom or dad feel to keep things in spite of the great upheaval under control.

The pelvic floor has to be treated very carefully in the first six weeks. "During this time, one must not lift anything heavy, neither the baby in the car seat, even laundry baskets, crates and shopping bags"Says midwife and healer Kulesza. The possible consequence is otherwise permanent incontinence. This also applies to women who had a Caesarean section. Rückbildungsgymnastik is announced after the birth until six weeks. Here you should to train with the belly as part of pelvic or back exercises only passively. "Only after three months, the woman can also strengthen the oblique and rectus abdominals specifically"So the midwife. Who would like to start with his favorite sport again, should also think of the pelvic floor: Jerky movements (eg jogging, horseback riding and trampolining.) Strain the pelvic floor in the first few months still.

If the soul sore: "Baby Blues" or have postpartum depression?

many women are emotionally sensitive than usual in the first days after birth. This is the hormonal part. but the increased sensitivity has an important function: "You should make the woman for the needs of the baby susceptible to allow a close bond with the child arise", Explains the expert. Therefore, the sensitivity does not have to be connected to Traurigkeitsgefühlen. "Women find these days rather then than Heultage 'when they are in hospital and could not give birth outpatient or wanted"So Kulesza. The impersonal atmosphere of the hospital and also, taking away 'the baby, that as a lie sometimes more in Wärmebettchen with his mother were often the trigger when the tears flowed.

Sometimes, however, the soul of a woman derailed in the days, weeks or even months after the birth so much that she needs help. There is a postpartum depression, which is a separate and serious disease and not with the "Baby Blues" has to do. "When a woman behaves striking and unusual for its nature, the environment should pay attention"Says Kulesza. Signs are connected, for example an extreme anxiety with a overprotect the Babies. Conversely, were also striking passivity, constant brooding, feelings of indifference or the feeling that you can not love his baby, warning signs. "It is important that the partner then aufmerkt because a woman usually even depression can not perceive." In mild cases, the follow-midwife can with talks and naturopathic methods attempt a relief. However, if the symptoms are severe, rapidly psychiatric help must be sought (for example, the social psychiatric service), because often even threatened suicide risk.

But even without that depression occurs, many women do not have to scrimp in the first weeks and months of birth. Not infrequently, the birth did not go the way you dreamed it. The birth took maybe very long, it might were needed pliers, suction cup or even a cesarean section, sometimes it did not go well at the beginning the baby. To handle such experiences, it takes time. Mostly, it helps to talk as much as possible with friends or other mothers about the birth. This goes especially well in play groups, Pekip- or baby massage courses. There you meet mothers who have given birth how even about the same time, and perhaps also welcome the opportunity to talk about this experience.

Sex and contraception

Among primitive peoples, the man may usually not close to the new mother. In Guinea mother and baby live even after childbirth still several months deposited in the refuge. But even after their return to the community a sex taboo that takes at least a year is among the most primitive peoples. This ensures, firstly, that the woman after birth has enough time to recover and to concentrate entirely on the baby emotionally. On the other hand, prevents their pregnancies to follow in rapid succession. As long as a pair of course want to not wait in the Western world. However, it is normal here when a woman after the birth for a long time has no desire for sex because she is emotionally and aligned in their need for closeness mostly on the child. "If the woman likes, but traffic is allowed once the bloody lochia is over"So midwife Judith Kulesza. This could be the case after about ten to 14 days, because now a protective layer had placed on the wound in the uterus. What then come, was more wound exudate and no blood. "But it is important that the man pays particular attention to hygiene, so washes before each traffic, even under the foreskin."

Prevention must be from the beginning, even if fully breastfeeding. "Because even if breaks for breastfeeding is more than three to four hours, the level of milk production hormone prolactin can drop so much that ovulation is possible," said the midwife. Since the first ovulation can occur before the first rule must also prevent women if they have not had her period again. The best way to condoms or the mini-pill, which does not affect breastfeeding are.

Even now entitled to midwife

Even in the late postpartum period can still take the follow-midwife to complete. For eight weeks, they may yet over and give advice without creating the new mother for this cost in case of problems upon request. 

Addresses and literature on the subject


A follow-midwife near the private residence can be found at http://www.urbia.de/services/hebammen. Even gynecologists and clinics hold free directories of follow-midwives in the region ready.

Accompanied by the first 40 days with Baby provides the postpartum guide of eltern.de.


  • A holistic view of pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum off the tech Western medicine and getting to know the customs of other nations allowed the book: "In waves to the world" I. Albrecht-Engel (ed.), L. Kuntner, M. Albrecht, Midena Verlag 1997.
  • Also in the classics "midwives clinic" Women receive suggestions to deal on natural and holistic way with the postpartum period. There are detailed tips to prevent postpartum discomfort or fix lighter disorders naturopathy. Ingeborg Stadelmann, self-published ersch. In 2004.
  • A toned stomach and a healthy back after pregnancy exercises help in Heike Höflers book: "Rückbildungsgymnastik. Fit and well after birth", With over 200 exercises", Goldmann Verlag of 2005.