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Postpartum: First 6 Weeks After Childbirth - Recovery At Home

What to avoid

Give your body a chance to heal. Wait to start certain activities.

  • Wait until you are healed (about 4 to 6 weeks) before you have sexual intercourse. Your doctor will tell you when it is okay to have sex.
  • Try not to travel with your baby for 5 or 6 weeks. If you take a long car trip, make frequent stops to walk around and stretch.
  • Do not rinse inside your vagina with fluids (douche).

Care after a C-section

If you had a C-section, you will need to take it easy while the incision heals.

  • Avoid strenuous activities, such as bicycle riding, jogging, weight lifting, and aerobic exercise, for 6 weeks or until your doctor says it is okay.
  • Until your doctor says it is okay, don't lift anything heavier than your baby.
  • You may have some vaginal bleeding. Wear pads. Do not use tampons until your doctor says it is okay.
  • Hold a pillow over your incision when you cough or take deep breaths. This will support your belly and decrease your pain.
  • You may shower as usual. Pat the incision dry when you are done.

For more information, see the topic Cesarean Section.

This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 13, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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