Caring for a new mother at home after the birth of her baby is important for her recovery and to relieve her stress. The Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital recommends that a new mother concentrate on taking care of herself and her baby during the first few weeks after birth. Childbirth is physically and emotionally taxing on women, so having someone at home to help care for her afterward is often beneficial.
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New mothers should be able to concentrate on bonding and developing a breastfeeding relationship instead of focusing on household chores. Laundry, dishes, vacuuming and other household tasks should be performed for her during the first few weeks after the birth.
After giving birth, a new mother will need to eat a healthy diet to recover from the birth. Prepare meals for the new mother and her family that can be refrigerated or frozen and simply heated in the oven with little to no other preparation involved. Enlisting other family and friends to help prepare meals for the first couple of weeks can spread the work out over several people and make the job easier.
Eliminate Extra Work
Childbirth is physically exhausting for many women, and energy levels may not return to normal for four to six weeks after giving birth. Everyday activities, including walking up and down steps, can be tiring. Help the mother by gathering any necessary supplies or items for her.
Cramps, pain and swelling are symptoms that women experience after childbirth. Help decrease these symptoms for the new mother by providing pain medication as prescribed by her doctor or midwife on the recommended schedule. Provide ice packs for the new mother to help decrease swelling of her perineum and make sure she has everything ready in the bathroom, such as perineal bottles filled with warm water to rinse her bottom after using the bathroom. If necessary, a helper can go to the store to purchase a bottle of witch hazel for compresses to soothe an irritated bottom.
New mothers need to remain adequately hydrated to fully heal and to produce an adequate milk supply. Providing new mothers with a fresh glass of ice water every couple of hours will ensure that she remains hydrated.