10 shocking things that happen to your body post birth

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I’m here to tell you the freaky truth about our postpartum bodies, and some practical advice to get through it all.
After months of backache and heartburn, not being able to sleep properly, and needing to pee every five minutes, I was looking forward to getting my body back post-baby. Little did I know pregnancy was just the beginning of the weird things that would happen. Post-partum recovery can be tough so don’t freak out when any of these things start happening…

1. Jelly belly. Images of celebs in bikinis holding their six-week-old babies are not reality. Your post-partum bump can last a good few months after having your baby. Even a year down the line, mine has not returned to normal.

2. A never-ending flow. Just when you think the bleeding has come to an end, it can start up again out of the blue. This on-again off-again bleeding can last for up to six weeks as the uterus returns to its pre-pregnancy state.

3. Post-labour pains. Labour has come and gone but every time you breastfeed you may experience painful cramps as your uterus shrinks back down to normal size.

4. Hormonal roller coaster. You cry because you are happy, you cry because you are sad. I remember even shedding a tear because I burnt my toast. Let’s face it: New Moms can spend a great deal of those first few weeks in tears.

5. Night sweats. If you Google ‘night sweats’ at 2am in your sleep-deprived state, by dawn you will have diagnosed yourself with a rare form of cancerous TB. Relax – night sweats are a normal way of your body eliminating all the excess fluid you retained during pregnancy.

6. Painful boobs. Large, swollen Dolly Parton-style breasts may sound appealing in theory but when it feels like some one is smuggling rocks under your skin you will wish your little A-cups were back.

7. Hair loss. Sadly, your luscious pregnancy locks won’t last. In fact, thanks to a hormonal shift post-pregnancy, don’t be surprised if clumps of your hair start falling out. Yikes!

8. You wet yourself. Sneezing, coughing or even a hearty laugh can result in a little whoopsy. But don’t run out and buy adult diapers just yet – everything is a little weaker down there post-delivery. Nothing that time and a few good Kegels can’t fix.

9. Asleep on your feet. Exhaustion to the point where you can’t remember the last time you actually slept takes a toll on your physical and emotional state.

10. Hygiene. It can sometimes get to 3pm before you realise that you still haven’t showered, changed or brushed your teeth that day.

Don’t panic, your body will start to return to normal again in a few months. Until then, go easy on yourself and ask for help if you need it.

What shocked you most about your body post baby?

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