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Hospital Recovery

Recovering in the Hospital

There are a number of things to expect immediately after delivery while you are in the hospital. Most of the things described here apply to both vaginal delivery and cesarean section.


Women should expect the swelling to Increase before it decreases, after delivery. Extra hand swelling can make the fingers feel tight and difficult to bend. The pinky, ring finger and middle finger may get numb and weak. The ankles and legs may really puff up in the first days after delivery. Hand symptoms are usually worse in the morning. Extra swelling is usual after induction of labor, epidural, and long labors. The swelling is rarely dangerous, but it can be unsightly and uncomfortable and it will go away on its own.


The bleeding can last six weeks, but typically tapers off after two weeks. “Normal” is when the bleeding continues to get less, even if it lasts for 4-6 weeks. There can be an occasional heavier bleeding, usually with cramping. Many women will experience some heavier bleeding 2-3 weeks after delivery. As long as the bleeding episode is limited to about a day, maybe two, and goes away on its own, things should be fine. Women who have increasing bleeding over 2 or 3 or 4 days should be evaluated. Read more…

Breast Milk

Babies don’t need very much milk in the first few days of life. Thank goodness for that, because the milk doesn’t really “come in” for 2-3 days. Women who choose to breast feed should NOT worry about how little milk they have, while in the hospital. By day three, when most women are home, the concerns about “where is my milk” are replaced by the pressure of full breasts AND the mess of milk leaking all over everything. Read more…


We use dissolvable suture to sew up tears. The stitches are not removed. Pain “down there” is more about how long you were pushing, and less about how many stitches there are. In any case, we have pain medicine to make sure the pain is adequately treated. Stitches don’t need any special care: just use soap and water to keep the vaginal area clean, like at any other time. Infection and problems with healing are thankfully rare.

Peeing after Delivery

Some patients can not empty their bladder after delivery. This problem can last a few days. It can happen to anyone, but is more common after pushing for a long time and after cesarean section or forceps delivery. The cure is “bladder rest.” A catheter is placed to keep the bladder empty. After 24 hours the catheter is often removed, to see if things are working better. If 24 hours isn’t enough bladder rest, the catheter will be replaced, and removed 3 or 4 days later.



Breastfeeding Class

Designed for both new and experienced parents, this class will take you step-by-step through breast- feeding basics and beyond. Learn proper technique…Read More.

Mommy & Me Class

Being a new mom can be challenging and uncertain for some. Learn, laugh, and grow with other new moms just like you. Network and discuss…Read More.


There are many choices for postpartum and lactation contraception, including the simple and (mostly) reliable condom. Women who don’t want to get pregnant MUST do something to prevent pregnancy (nature’s rule). Read More…