Dealing with Your First Period After Baby

Life is about to get more exhilarating than ever before as you embark on the adventure of caring for your little one. But wait! Amidst all the excitement, don't forget to prioritize some self-care, especially when bracing for your first postpartum period—yes, even with a cute newborn in tow! So, buckle up, and let's dive into the thrilling realm of the postpartum period!

period set

When Will You Get Your Period Again?

The rollercoaster of postpartum life is taking off, and you're about to discover how giving birth can affect your period! If you're not breastfeeding, you can expect the crimson wave to make its grand reappearance around six to eight weeks after your little one arrives. But if you're breastfeeding, things can get slightly more unpredictable—how thrilling!

For those exclusively breastfeeding—meaning your tiny human is solely sustained by your amazing breast milk—you might not have a period for the entire duration of your breastfeeding journey. How wild is that? But keep in mind, every woman is different, and some may find their period returning after just a few months, even while breastfeeding.

Now, for the lucky few who experience the swift return of their period after a vaginal birth, your doctor may advise against using tampons during your first menstrual cycle. Though it might feel like a bummer, remember that your body is still recovering, and tampons could cause damage. Safety first!

Related: What Are The Signs of Early Labor

Can a Woman Get Pregnant Before Her Period?

Get ready to do a happy dance because your cycle is making a comeback! But hold on to your party hats—did you know you'll ovulate a full two weeks before your first period? If you're not quite ready to add another member to your family's roster, it's time for a thrilling adventure into the realm of birth control options!

Hormonal contraceptives might be all the rage, but beware—if they contain estrogen, they could put a damper on your milk supply. But fear not, intrepid nursing moms! There's a treasure trove of non-hormonal birth control options that won't interfere with your breastfeeding escapades.

Schedule a rendezvous with your doctor to discuss the best options for you, like diaphragms, condoms, certain sneaky pills (think progesterone-only tablets that won't sabotage milk production), and select IUDs. With these birth control superstars, you'll have peace of mind, so you can focus on savoring every precious moment with your little one. Let the postpartum party continue!

Don’t let postpartum periods ruin the fun. Check out our Baby Subscription Box to welcome your bundle of joy!

What Can You Expect From Your First Period After Giving Birth?

Welcome to the amazing journey of postpartum recovery! Whether you give birth vaginally or through a cesarean section, your body will experience some unexpected changes. 

One of the things you can expect is postpartum bleeding and vaginal discharge as your body continues to eliminate the blood and tissue that lined your uterus during pregnancy.

In the first few weeks, the blood may be thicker and form clots, but as time passes, it will be replaced with lochia, a biological fluid that can range in color from transparent to creamy white to scarlet. This discharge may last for up to six weeks, which is also roughly when your period may return if you're not breastfeeding.

But how can you tell if you're experiencing pregnancy-related bleeding or your period? Here are some tips: 

  • Lochia is often not as vivid red beyond the first week postpartum and may be lighter and seem watery or white. Bright red blood six or more weeks after birth is more likely to be your period. 
  • Also, increased physical activity may exacerbate pregnancy-related bleeding, while lochia is more common if your discharge rises with effort and reduces with rest. 
  • Lastly, lochia often has a unique odor, so be sure to report any unusual smells to your physician.

It may also take some time for your menstrual cycle to return to normal after giving birth. You may have your first period, miss a cycle, and then have your next period earlier than planned. Throughout the first postpartum year, it's common for your period length, cycle frequency, and bleeding severity to change, especially for nursing mothers.

But don't worry; the Cleveland Clinic reports that most postpartum women will have a "normal" menstrual cycle of 21 to 35 days with bleeding lasting 2 to 7 days. Your menstrual cycles may differ from those experienced before pregnancy, but that's all part of the incredible journey of motherhood.

Related: 31 Weeks Pregnant: Tips and Advice for Your Third Trimester

What Causes Postpartum Periods to be Somewhat Painful?

Are you ready for some exciting postpartum updates? While periods after childbirth may not be everyone's favorite topic, it's essential to know that several factors can contribute to a less-than-pleasant experience.

For starters, your uterus works extra hard during your period to shed more of the lining, which can cause discomfort. If you're nursing, the hormones involved can also play a role in the intensity of your period. Let's not forget about the uterus cavity itself, which has undergone some serious changes during pregnancy and can take some time to get back to its pre-baby size.

These changes are all normal parts of the postpartum experience. And with time, your body will continue to heal and adjust. So embrace the journey, and remember you're a warrior for bringing new life into the world!

Don’t let postpartum periods ruin the fun. Check out our Baby Subscription Box to welcome your bundle of joy!

period pain after pregnancy

When Should You See a Physician About Your Period?

Massive clots? Bigger than a quarter and hanging around for days? They could be a sign of a thyroid condition, infection, fibroids, or polyps. Time for some medical detective work!

Heavy, painful periods with spotting between cycles? You might be dealing with adenomyosis, a thickening of the uterine wall. While it's typically not dangerous, it can make things a little uncomfortable—especially during intimate moments.

Fear not! Your doctor or midwife is here to save the day with treatments like anti-inflammatory drugs, hormones, or even a minor surgical operation.

But wait—prolonged significant blood loss can lead to anemia caused by iron deficiency, bringing on fatigue, dizziness, and irritability. The good news? Diagnosis and treatment are a breeze!

If a blood test reveals low iron, your doctor will swoop in with iron supplements and vitamin C to help your body absorb the iron like a superhero.

And finally, if your period hasn't made a comeback three months after giving birth or three months after stopping nursing, it's time for a chat with your practitioner. While it may be normal, two rare disorders could put a pause on menstruation:

Sheehan's Disorder, which injures the pituitary gland after birth, leading to irregular periods. Luckily, hormone treatment is here to save the day!

Asherman's Disease, a scarring of the uterus often caused by a D&C operation after a miscarriage. This condition may cause infertility, but fear not! A woman who desires to conceive again may find hope with an operative hysteroscopy.

So, embrace the thrilling journey of postpartum life, knowing that you're in good hands with your doctor and the world of modern medicine!

see a doctor

Final Thoughts

You did it, and now you have another joyous milestone ahead of you: managing those first weeks and tackling your post-baby period like a champ.

Sure, it might seem daunting at first, but fear not. With the proper preparation and knowledge, you can conquer anything. That's why we're here to provide you with all the knowledge you need about post-baby periods. 

Don't let post-baby life hold you back – embrace it as an exciting new adventure. With all this treasured info, you're ready to become a post-baby master! 

And remember to welcome your little one with a special subscription box - it's the perfect surprise for them and a reminder of the exciting road that lies ahead. So get ready to rock this new phase of your life, and remember that you've got this!

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