Fourth Trimester Podcast Episode 21: The Two Most Common Birth Issues
The first 6 weeks post-birth from a medical perspective
As an expecting parent, you’ll likely be in close contact with your doctor throughout your pregnancy. Your doctor will assist your birth and you’ll have a 6-week follow up appointment. But what about the time period between the birth and the 6-week checkup? What does your doctor want you to know about that time?
Dr Monica Hannon is our guest on episode 21, and she shares some of the major issues that mothers and partners face during the first six weeks following the birth of a baby. She advises on when it makes sense to pick up the phone and call your doctor.
Most Common Issues
The top two most common medical issues that come up for women during the first 6 weeks following birth are:
- Mood disorders – Dr Hannon recommends having a partner help watch for signs of postpartum depression, and to call your doctor when there aren’t highs that balance the lows.
- Breastfeeding complications – Rather than beat yourself up over having breastfeeding complications, recognize the effort that you put in to achieving your breastfeeding goals. The key point is that you did everything in your power. You can feel good about that, even if breastfeeding was challenging or didn’t work at all.
Dr Hannon’s wealth of information comes from her years of experience working first hand with new parents, having been part of over 1,500 births. Her practice is Lakeside Obstetrics, Gynecology, & Fertility (www.LakesideObGyn.org) in San Francisco, California. You can read her full bio here.
Listen to Dr Hannon’s episode to learn about:
- typical issues that come up for women between the birth and first 6-week checkup
- how partners can look out for a new mother and support her
- how women can prepare for the first few months after birth: taking care of themselves, what to expect physically emotionally, etc
- the questions that women may want to think through before they come to the hospital
What to do if you are experiencing these issues
Dr. Monica Hannon recommends that if a woman is experiencing physical healing challenges, breastfeeding difficulties, postpartum depression, or partner issues during the postpartum period, she should reach out for help. Speak with your doctor, therapist, an anonymous & free support line such as the PSI helpline.
She also stresses the importance of self-care and relationships during the postpartum period. Dr. Hannon expands on this conversation and talks about how she involves partners in the conversation in her small private practice, as well as how she works with alternative families.
It is also recommended that couples focus on synchronizing their sleep cycle with the baby, take time to care for themselves, and carve out time every week for an hour without the baby to help re-connect their relationship.