Many people assume that life after giving birth to a child is easy. The fact of the matter is that new moms have to undergo a new phase of sleepless nights and tiresome days with an awful amount of mood swings. After giving birth to a child, the body tries to recover and repair itself to normal. However, this does not come easy for new moms.
A newborn child needs attention 24/7 and unless the parents divide the responsibility, it is completely up to the new moms to look after them. Therefore, exhaustion is common amongst new moms after childbirth. At the same time, new moms can also fight exhaustion by following several tips. In this article, we are going to discuss what new moms go through after childbirth and how can they manage to make it a bit easier for themselves.
Reasons for Exhaustion
Recovery after birth is a long process
As opposed to what many people assume, recovery after birth takes a long time and we are not talking about a week or two but six to eight weeks. Yes! You heard that right. An average new mom takes around that much amount of time to recover after giving birth to a child. The majority of this time is consumed by the uterus, which takes a long time to shrink back to its normal position and size. It is a profound fact that both pregnancy and birth are the most intense periods in a women’s life. Furthermore, the recovery process is not only related to the recovery of the uterus but also the physical and mental state as well.
What to do?
As mentioned previously, pregnancy and birth are tiring yet the most important moments in a women’s life. You need to go easy on yourself through the process. Pain and mood swings are a part of the process and mentally preparing yourself prior to pregnancy is the best way to deal with the situation. You need to understand that your body has been through enough most of the year and it is time to give it rest. Therefore, sleep well, eat well, and do not be hard on yourself.
You might be anemic
Anemic is a situation in which the body consists of a low amount of iron. This is quite common in new mothers. In fact, one study found that almost 65% of new moms are anemic. This is a result of pregnancy itself or lack of iron-packed foods etc. Furthermore, it could also be due to bleeding during and after birth. Anemia can cause a mother to feel dizzy and become fatigued.
What to do?
If you feel that you are fatigued even after taking naps and long sleeps, then it is possible that the iron levels in your body are low. Therefore, you need to get your blood test done. To overcome the problem, you will simply need to consume foods that are packed with iron.
Your Brain is on High Alert
Regardless of what anybody says, no one understands a newborn better than the mother. It is not something enforced in them rather natural. A new mom is always in a state of alert. This creates constant tension and puts the new mom under extreme stress. As a result, she is supposed to remain tired and fatigued even after taking a good night’s sleep. Crying is a baby’s way of telling the parents that he/she is hungry or afraid of something.
Therefore, as soon as the baby starts to cry, the new mom will rush to the newborn’s aid. Although this is pretty normal amongst new moms as well but one cannot deny the fact that it required a whole lot of effort and sleepless nights.
What to do?
Self-meditate. One can ignore its importance but cannot deny its benefits. A recent study conducted on new moms found that mothers who meditated found themselves more at ease, comfortable, and experienced less stress. Furthermore, the mothers were less fatigued as well and this allowed them to recover well.
Your work schedule is ridiculous
It has been stated that an average mother of a 5 to 12-year old puts in 14 hours every single day to look after the house as well as the kid. What this means is that she spends around 98 hours every week on parenting and carrying out work-related responsibilities. Now take in the special consideration of a new mom, who wakes up every 2 or three hours.
You need to be a superwoman to pull that off, seriously. When you are looking after a newborn, it is not just your body that is putting in the effort but your physical and mental state as well. Even if your body is fresh, you will not be able to get out of bed if you are still mentally fatigued. Therefore, the key lies in balancing both the body and the psychological state. In the case of either being imbalanced, a human being cannot afford to get things done, especially a new mom.
What to do?
Take a break. Not because you deserve it, because you need it. If you are working somewhere full-time, it is your right to request for leaves. Even a five-minute nap can provide you sufficient energy to end your day with a blast. It is all in the simple things. For instance, ask a friend to come over and look after your newborn just so that you can take a good hot shower in peace. Take a walk or visit the nearest park. This will keep you fresh and reduce your stress.
You must be multi-tasking
Women are better at multi-tasking and that is not just us but science has proven the same thing. A typical woman will be frying an egg while talking on the phone with a friend and trying to put on a school uniform on another. This is a lot tougher than you might think. From the outside, it might look as if mothers are used to it but it takes a serious toll on the mother’s brain.
What to do?
The best way to tackle multitasking is by taking 15-minute breaks every once in a while. Sit down, relax, and allow your body to adjust to the new routine.
Breast Feeding is a tough job
If only waking up every 2 to 3 hours and multi-tasking wasn’t enough. Breastfeeding is a tough job as well that takes away most of the new mom’s energy. As mentioned before, the struggle does not end after giving birth. It is just the beginning of a new phase. Believe it or not, women tend to utilize more energy while breastfeeding their newborn as compared to caring for them while they are growing. Around 500 calories per day are used to breastfeed. That is the equivalent of walking seven miles every day.
Tips to fight exhaustion
Seek Comfort and Rest
New moms are most often told to nap when the baby naps and it is true. When you are a new mother and in the newborn fatigue phase, try to get as much rest as possible. Furthermore, try to sleep early in the evenings. When it is time to feed your baby, be comfortable. There is no need to panic. Breastfeeding is a tiring process, therefore, feed your baby while relaxing yourself.
Raising a newborn on your own is a tough job. Do not feel shy or embarrassed asking someone close for help. Ask someone to come over and help you with the dishes and laundry etc. Since you are already tired during the day, running to the store for some diapers or cooking a meal might seem impossible. Therefore, if you can afford it, hire someone to help or simply request a relative or a close friend to come to help you with some tiring tasks.
It is understood that everyone wants to visit and see the newborn. However, that should not come above your health. If there are visitors who are dying to come see the baby, request them to wait a while, or simply limit them. Entertaining the guests will not be possible if visitors keep coming to your house. Late-night gatherings and dinners can wait.
Proper nutrition and hydration are of utmost importance during pregnancy and after giving birth. While your body is fighting and recovering, you will need power-packed foods to serve both purposes. Therefore, prioritize nutrition and get enough fluids to stay hydrated. Once the baby is born, start eating vitamins and other essential nutrients. This will help raise your energy levels and fight against exhaustion.
Exhaustion is a natural process that comes with pregnancy and childbirth. However, it all comes down to how you deal with it. If you were to follow the tips mentioned above, chances are that you are going to make childbirth much easier on yourself. Therefore, if you are a new mom, understand that exhaustion after childbirth is common and you are not the only one experiencing it. Make sure to look after yourself and enjoy motherhood.