​After birth care

Contraception

It is possible to fall pregnant immediately after giving birth even if you are breastfeeding.

If you do not desire to fall pregnant then consider using barrier contraception (condoms). You may resume sexual activity as soon as you feel comfortable. You may need to wait longer if you had a vaginal birth requiring stitches, or a caesarean birth.

If you are breastfeeding then it is important not to start the combined oral contraceptive pill as it may affect your milk supply. Your options will include progesterone-only pills (the mini pill), a progesterone implant or progesterone injection given every third month.

Ask your GP for more information at your six-week appointment. 

Feeling unwell

If you are feeling unwell please contact your GP or local Maternity Service.

General signs of infection include:

  • Pain
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Discharge that may have an unpleasant odour
  • Temperature
  • Area may be hot to touch

If you are breastfeeding and find painful areas that are red and lumpy you may have blocked milk ducts or be developing mastitis (infection of the milk ducts).

In this case you should to see your GP as soon as possible, however keep breastfeeding/expressing for until your appointment time as it may help to relieve the blockage.

Postnatal follow up with your GP

We recommend that you and your baby visit your local GP within six weeks after birth.

A full complete postnatal review should be attended at this appointment which may include: 

  • Your baby should have a complete routine head-to-toe check up
  • Discuss contraception with you GP
  • Have a plan when your next pap smear is due
  • Discuss current medications and follow-up scripts required
  • Have perineal suturing reviewed or Caesarean wound check
  • Discuss any discomforts that you may be experiencing including incontinence
  • Discuss your emotional well being
  • Blood tests (as required)
  • Breast check
  • Blood pressure
  • Pap smear
  • Perineal stitches or caesarean section wound
  • Discuss any incontinence you may be experiencing
  • Emotional well being