So, you have finally seen your baby and there could be nothing more pleasant in the world right now. But along with this pleasant gift, also comes the labor pain. Yes! Which is actually not bearable. The process is called as episiotomy, which is a cut made from the vagina to the rectum of a woman during a vaginal birth. And there are times when the vaginal opening needs to be made a little larger to ensure smooth delivery. This for sure can be painful and take some time to heal. But if given proper care, you can treat your episiotomy wound post delivery. Make sure you take your medications and see your doctor on a regular basis and do not neglect even the slightest of things. Here are some of the ways in which you can heal your episiotomy wounds in the best ways possible:
Use an ice pack
It is essential to keep the area cold and the best way is to apply an ice pack. Make sure you apply the pack for 10 to 20 minutes and not more than that as it may cause nerve damage. Start with the application of it after 24 to 48 hours of giving birth; it will help in decreasing the pain and swelling that women often feel. The easiest way is to wrap some ice cubes in a towel and apply it directly to the perennial area. Or you can also use a frozen gel pack which is easy to wrap your legs around.
Keep the area clean and dry
We all know the importance of keeping the vaginal area clean and dry. There are an enormous number of ways to do it. Make sure you wear loose and breathable bottom clothing that allows the air to circulate. Wipe your genital area after urination that will keep the area dry. Make sure you use soft toilet paper that does not contain irritating chemicals. And the most important one is to change your pads every 4 to 6 hours as this will reduce the risk of infection.
Rest! Rest! And rest!
Your doctor would have strictly recommended you complete bed rest for the next six weeks which means no sex and no physical activities. As this will prevent your stitches from ripping apart. Not only this, but it will consequently speed up your healing process. Thereby, in order to make sure that your stitches don’t rip apart, better to take help of your friends and family.
Try to get as many hours of sleep as you used to get before your baby was born. There is no doubt that you’ll have a number of nights where it will be almost impossible for you to complete your nap hours. The best way is to sleep when the baby has slept. Take as many naps in a day as you can and your body will heal quickly.
Be meticulous while moving
You need to take great care of yourself when getting up from your chair or bed or when indulging into any sort of movement. Make sure that there is no force exerted in the vaginal area as this can induce pain. Do things in a slow motion manner and do not hurry. Lower your knees first and then try to sit and rest your bottoms.
Don’t let your nails grow
This may sound unimportant but cut them short as this can apparently hurt your wound while applying creams down there. Ensure that you keep your hands clean before you apply the creams (recommended by your doctor) and don’t let these nails hurt you.
In case you feel uncomfortable sitting for too long or sitting on a hard surface, use a soft cushion beneath you while sitting.
Take salt water baths
Use cool water in the beginning of the first few days and then use warm water but do ask your doctor. It will heal the pain faster and reduce any sort of pain and swelling.
Use squirt bottle with warm water.
Whenever you use the toilet, clean the area with warm water and pat dry with a clean soft cloth. Wipe from front to back to prevent any bacteria from entering the anus.
After your doctor has recommended you to start with light exercises, do it by tightening and relaxing your vaginal muscles. This will heal the pain quickly. Moreover, walking may also boost blood circulation.
Avoid using tampons
As the bleeding will be a bit heavier after giving birth, you will have to wear thick pads. It is best to use these pads as these not only help in the healing process but you yourself wouldn’t want to use tampons until your six week check up and get the confirmation from your doctor.
Tighten your butts
Squeeze your buttocks every time you sit down or get up as this will reduce the discomfort you usually feel. This will also reduce the chances of not letting your stitches rip apart. It may sound a lot difficult but keep trying as this will ultimately be of great help.
Use witch hazel
It is an astringent with anti inflammatory properties that can be directly applied to the area in a numerous ways. You can either apply it using a cotton pad or you can buy pre-soaked cotton pads. Apart from this, you can also add it to your sitz bath. Make sure that the witch hazel you purchased contains no alcohol which may lead to irritation.
Use stool softener
It is generally difficult to take a poo after delivery. The best solution is to use a stool softener. These can also be used during breastfeeding. However, these should not be used for more than three days. More importantly, do consult your doctor before taking a stool softener to discuss which one is right for you.
It is extremely important to stay hydrated and drink lots of water during the day. It will prevent complications like nausea, cramps and headaches.