Postnatal care (Latin for after birth)
It is the care given to the mother and baby in the days and weeks after childbirth which includes themother’s and the baby’s physical, psychological and practical needs.
Postnatal care is
- To see if the woman has returned to her pre pregnant state.
- To monitor and ensure healthy development of the baby.
- Help the mother (and family) to adapt and successfully fulfill the role and responsibilities of motherhood.
- To give the mother sufficient rest and support after the physical exertion of the labour itself which involves allowing the new mother to rest as much as she feels she needs to whilst providing comfort, food and plenty of drinks in order for her to recover and to produce plenty of breast milk if she is considering breast feeding.
The doctor will check to make sure that the mother and baby remain well, physically, psychologically and emotionally, and will look out for any signs of early postnatal complications.
Some complications are listed below:
- Persistent or unusually heavy or abnormal bleeding from the womb.
- Infection of any stitches in or around the vagina as a result of an episiotomy.
- Signs of infection of a caesarean section wound.