Many new mothers wonder when the first period after birth will start again. First period after giving birth how long should it last? In principle, the first menstrual period begins at the earliest five to six weeks after delivery. On the other hand, it is not promising to guess the exact time. It varies greatly from woman to woman and depends on various factors.
First period after giving birth how long should it last?
Most mothers are at first happy that their period will stop after the birth: after all, they have enough to do in the first days, weeks, and months after delivery to deal with the physical changes after pregnancy: The regression after birth begins, the birth injuries heal, the hormones go crazy and the newborn baby also needs its parents – day and night! The renewed onset of menstruation is rather annoying for many mothers in the first period after birth. But you should also look at it positively: Your body returns to normal after a state of emergency and is ready for a new pregnancy.
What is the earliest possible time for the first period after birth?
Only when the uterus has regressed after the birth and the hormone level has settled down can menstruation begin again? How long the body allows itself time for this varies from mother to mother.
The first period after giving birth how long should it last? a period is usually preceded by an interruption. This is possible for mothers who do not breastfeed or express milk as early as three weeks after delivery. Accordingly, the first period can occur at the earliest five weeks after birth. However, the exact time also depends on how long the postpartum period – and thus also the postpartum flow – lasts. In mothers with several children, for example, this period is significantly longer. If a Caesarean section is performed, the postpartum period is shorter and also dries up more quickly than with natural birth. Thus, the first period after birth by Caesarean section usually occurs earlier. Although the menstrual flow also ebbs away more quickly in nursing mothers, their first menstrual period usually starts later due to the hormone prolactin that is released during breastfeeding.
Statistically speaking, the first period after pregnancy begins in the first six to twelve weeks after birth in 50 percent of non-nursing mothers. This means that the period between the absence of the period at the beginning of pregnancy and the return of the period after birth is about one year.
Breastfeeding delays the first period after birth
Breastfeeding has a great influence on the hormone balance of new mothers. When breastfeeding, the body releases prolactin to produce milk. This hormone inhibits or prevents the egg cells from maturing in the ovaries and influences the onset of the first ovulation and thus the first period after birth. In most cases, women who are fully breastfeeding, i.e. women who breastfeed their child at least every four hours, will not start menstruating again until after weaning. However, breastfeeding mothers should still think about contraception: a shift in the breastfeeding rhythm due to different time intervals or a night’s sleep without breastfeeding can be enough to trigger ovulation. Moreover, ovulation usually takes place unnoticed, so that women are not even aware of their renewed fertility. Breastfeeding is therefore not safe protection against conception.
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Still menstrual flow or already period after birth?
How can I know if my bleeding is still part of my menstrual flow or is already part of my new menstrual period? The answer to this question is very simple: The consistency and color of the menstrual flow changes during the postpartum period. In the first week, the wound area was created when the afterbirth detached from the uterine wall heals. Therefore, relatively heavy bleeding can occur during this period. The discharge is red and contains tissue remnants, among other things. From the second week onwards, the postpartum flow weakens and becomes brownish. Towards the end of the postpartum, the discharge has a whitish color and becomes weaker from day today.
The menstruation, on the other hand, begins, as you are used to, relatively strong and has a light to dark red color. Even if the menstrual flow and the first period after birth follow each other immediately, they can be easily distinguished from each other.
Does the period change after birth?
Many women are unprepared for the first period after giving birth: Either they simply don’t expect it yet, have gotten used to the fact that their period will not come, or they simply have too many other things on their mind. Many mothers are then surprised not only by the onset of the period but also by the strength of the bleeding: Often the first period after birth is more intense, more painful, and lasts longer. But for most of them, this quickly returns and in the following cycles, the bleeding tends to be less and shorter than before the birth.
First period after giving birth how long should it last?
However, the female body needs time to get back to its regular menstrual cycle. Therefore, you should not be surprised about irregularities in the first months after your period starts again. However, if they persist, it is advisable to discuss them with your gynecologist. In this case, it is best to keep a cycle calendar to be able to accurately document any deviations.
Tampons, menstrual cup, or sanitary towels?
Before the birth of their child, most women had decided on a certain form of monthly hygiene. Whether you want to use tampons, sanitary towels, menstrual cup or sponge is a very individual decision. Some also combine tampons, sanitary towels, panty liners, and menstrual cups – depending on the intensity of bleeding and planned activities. After birth, however, mothers are often uncertain whether they can continue to use the form of monthly hygiene they are used to.
Gynecologists recommend that mothers avoid tampons and menstrual cups for the first six weeks after giving birth. The reason for this is the menstrual flow and the associated risk of infection. During menstrual flow, you should use special templates and bandages for heavy bleeding. In the maternity ward, these are usually available in the toilets. If the menstrual flow becomes weaker, normal bandages and, towards the end, panty liners will suffice.
First period after giving birth how long should it last? As soon as the first period after giving birth begins, you can return to the form of monthly hygiene you were used to before the pregnancy. Then tampons, a menstrual cup, or a menstrual sponge are also harmless. However, many mothers notice that they can no longer fall back on their usual sizes, but need more volume. This is because the body changes with birth.
Contraception after childbirth?
The desire for sex is a big issue for many couples after birth. While most men would like to have sex with their partners again, the situation is very different for women: Some feel pleasure again just a few weeks after giving birth, while for others it takes several months. Reasons can be a changed body feeling, fear of pain, or simply exhaustion: The constant tiredness and challenges of parenthood often influence the sexual desire of both partners.
If you don’t want to become pregnant unintentionally, you should under no circumstances wait with contraception until the first period after giving birth. Because then the first ovulation is already behind you! You should start using active contraception no later than one month after giving birth – even if you are breastfeeding.
Non-nursing mothers can use their usual contraceptive methods such as the pill, minipill, condom, diaphragm, coil, vaginal ring, the natural symptothermal method of contraceptive patches.
It is somewhat more complicated for breastfeeding mothers: during the breastfeeding period, the contraceptive must not affect the health of mother and baby – just as little as the quality and quantity of the milk. Methods such as condoms, diaphragms, the minipill (also known as the breastfeeding pill), or the hormone coil are particularly suitable for contraception during the breastfeeding period.
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