How long did it take before you felt physically better from your c section? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 35 Old 04-04-2010, 07:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I know healing must go in stages, so please tell me your experience of these stages!
For me so far I am 18 days past surgery. Better in many ways than at first, but still so weak and sore and tire easily and so physically traumatized. Can't do exercise or much housework or go for walks.

How long till you exercised? How long till you went out in public and didn't feel awful? How long till you felt really good again- or does that even ever happen?!

Please share with me your time table of healing and hopefully give me some hope that I will feel better than I do now Ouch!
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#2 of 35 Old 04-05-2010, 04:03 PM
 
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At 5 weeks, I could go for short trips out of the house. I went for a 30 minute walk with baby in a Moby at 9 weeks and didn't do it again until she was 3 months old. I won't say it was physically impossible for me to be more active, it just wasn't worth the pain and fatigue to me.

She is now 3 months and 2 weeks and I feel like myself. I have started training for a 5k in June and feel good most of the time. I still can't lift both of my legs at the same time but I haven't done any abdominal rehab either.

When I feel down about the section and aftermath, I hold my baby, close my eyes, sniff her sweet head and say, "That was the price of my crown." The price was high but I paid it in full. She is mine forever.

Not even 3 weeks out, you are doing well, momma. It takes time. Rushing yourself helps nothing. You will heal. You will feel good again. Sending you a gentle hug....

Amy

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#3 of 35 Old 04-05-2010, 04:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank You! That was just what I needed to hear.
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#4 of 35 Old 04-05-2010, 04:14 PM
 
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When I feel down about the section and aftermath, I hold my baby, close my eyes, sniff her sweet head and say, "That was the price of my crown." The price was high but I paid it in full. She is mine forever.
This made me cry. I thought I had an easy time of it, but I was still hurting four months pp.

This week at 6 months I can honestly say I feel good. I can lift things and strain myself without hurting afterwords. dtd is back to normal. I still don't allow my son to 'kick me in my insicion', but I'm not sure if even that's necessary anymore.

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#5 of 35 Old 04-05-2010, 04:21 PM
 
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a few days for pain to be gone, a few weeks for soreness to be gone, 8yrs and 15 yrs pp the emotional trauma is still worse than the physical trauma ever was.

honestly, i think i'm a freak of nature. i passed on the morphine pump both times and didnt fill the rx after discharge either. my csecs were horrible assaults on my mind, heart, and body, but TBH, it was more stressful for me to deal with leaky boobs than the discomfort of surgery.

as for range of motion, that took a long time. i still cant life both legs together or do a single sit up, and ds2 is just about 8yo.

Bring back the old MDC
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#6 of 35 Old 04-05-2010, 05:02 PM
 
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i'm at the other end. i felt good about two weeks after surgery and was up and running around just fine afer only a few days. sitting up from a lying down position took much longer, but at 8 weeks out, i'm fine and haven't taken pain meds since week 3. i'm walking as much as i can to loose the flabby belly i've been left with.

mom to Andrew   born Feb 6th, already a mom to child with fur; and still missing and still wondering about the lost possibilities Mar 17, 2009
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#7 of 35 Old 04-05-2010, 10:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Catubodua Sorry if this is stating the obvious- but I remember you from the ttc forums! Right? Weren't we on there for a similar length of time? And now we both have sons?! Congratulations! (sorry to side track my own post there!)
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#8 of 35 Old 04-05-2010, 11:45 PM
 
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yes! we both put in our dues in that section!

it was nice to see your name pop up as having a little boy too!

mom to Andrew   born Feb 6th, already a mom to child with fur; and still missing and still wondering about the lost possibilities Mar 17, 2009
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#9 of 35 Old 04-08-2010, 01:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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ugh- physically hard day. One one level I have more strength and energy. I can do housework and lift things and I even went for a short walk!
But the incision is hurting really bad. It isn't red or seeping or infected. Just stings and itches. but I looked at it for the first time in the mirror today- shock. It looks way deeper and huger than I had hoped. It looks like two lips pressing down with a line in the middle, where as I had hoped it was just a line, not a big indentation as it is.
I really hope it gets better some day. I don't know what to expect. Sucks right now!
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#10 of 35 Old 04-08-2010, 07:29 PM
 
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I've had five. All over the map.

At two weeks or so, I always notice a serious improvement. By that time, I'm over the "hump" of being unable to do...anything much. Sometimes, it's been a little less than that, but never more.

I'd call six weeks my next sort of checkpoint, but it's been varied:

With ds1, I walked 15 blocks uphill (steep) home from my 6 week checkup. I was pretty much completely physically healed at that point. Except for some phantom pelvic pain over the next few years, for which a cause was never found, I had no more pain.

With dd2, I can't remember exactly, but I know I was hiking by the time she was two months old, for sure. However, I also had pain in my incision for about 7-8 months or so.

With ds2, I was up and about and doing my normal things at six weeks, but still couldn't take baths, because my incision wasn't closed (torn staple in the hospital). However, I never really got "back to normal" from that one, because I have fairly widespread abdominal/pelvic numbness that's never gone away. (DS2 will be five in July.)

With Aaron...I really don't remember. The first two weeks were utter hell, physically and emotionally. The subsequent few weeks were so hard emotionally that the physical side kind of faded, so I don't know exactly how fast I healed up.

DD2: I had her last June. It was, by far, my best short-term recovery of the bunch...sore and slow, but not crippled up like with the previous four. However, I've noted that my extensive numb areas are bigger now, and my "core" is non-existent. Btween my huge diastasis, and all the issues with sensation, I'm finding any kind of abdominal work (even the Tupler technique stuff) extremely difficult. I can walk, lift, probably hike (haven't gone out yet this year), etc....but yoga and ab work and things like that are way beyond me at this point.

Really, it mostly just takes time. You're still pretty early on.

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#11 of 35 Old 04-08-2010, 07:31 PM
 
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My scars have also been all over the map. My current one (the OB excised all the old scar tissue, so I only have one - I okayed that in OR, but I have mixed feelings about it) is mostly a straight line, with a fairly deep dimple near the right end (that's from the two times it didn't close all the way, and got infected).

I can't tell you what your's will look like when it's fully healed up. However, I can tell you that it will look a lot better than it does now. At this point, it's still a healing incision, not a scar.

Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
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#12 of 35 Old 04-10-2010, 02:51 PM
 
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I'm 2.5 weeks out and feel pretty good. Sure, I'm sore but I'm on my own with 4 kids 4 and under so I'm thinking that's really good. the incision site doesn't hurt but the area about 2 inches above it hurts. Plus it itches there! The OB even said that was strange that it itched and hurt there instead of the incision site.LOL

Me : DD 5/05: DS1 7/06 : DS2 11/07: DS3 3/10
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#13 of 35 Old 04-10-2010, 04:10 PM
 
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Does the pain feel anything like a sunburn, but without the heat? If so, it's pretty common (I've had it twice), and is the result of nerve damage. It may manifest differently, but the combination of sunburn-type pain and itching is a very common manifestation.

I'm surprised the OB thinks it's strange...but I'm also not surprised, at the same time. Doctors, ime, have their own ideas about how post-op healing progresses, and if something doesn't fit their concept, they tend to dismiss it, in one way or another.

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#14 of 35 Old 04-11-2010, 09:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Feeling sorry for myself today about still feeling pain at my incision, especially in one areaof the incision where it particularly hurts . I am trying to figure out if this is a cut nerve or scar tissue or why this one area (at the start of the incision sort of) hurts so much more than other areas.
And I am frustrated with how it is affecting my intimate relations with my dh. I kjnow it is normal to not dtd for a good while after c section but it has been almost a month and that is hard to handle- hard to handle that now I feel pain and sadness in my womb area where it used to be an area of great pleasure for me. that just sucks!

Is there a c section support thread- for people processing stuff from c sections? can I start one? Would it be in this section?
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#15 of 35 Old 04-12-2010, 01:31 AM
 
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It is still pretty early for sex. You need more time to heal. I know it is very difficult but that is pushing things a bit.


My first surgery I healed quickly and was fine, my second was much more difficult but it was following a difficult pregnancy.

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#16 of 35 Old 04-12-2010, 03:24 AM
 
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I'm not sure what your story is, but my c-section was a very sudden, unplanned thing--I started hemorrhaging in the middle of the night at home, rushed to the hospital and underwent an emergency c-section under general for a placental abruption.

It took me a good 6-8 weeks before I felt better physically. I remember going shopping with my mom around 4 weeks, thinking that I felt up to it, and by the time we'd been out a couple of hours I was sore and tired and ready to go home. I was still using Norco occasionally at 5-6 weeks. Motrin just didn't quite do it for me, esp at night. My scar looked very much like you describe, but now at 18 months it's nearly impossible to find.

Emotionally. . . I felt very betrayed by my body for a while. I went through a little post-traumatic stress thing about 2 weeks out. I made the mistake of getting online and reading about PA and it really freaked me out. The whole huge thing just sort of crashed down on me. One night we were going to go out to dinner with my mom and brother and they kept asking me where I wanted to go and I just kept crying--the mere act of deciding what I wanted for dinner or even if I wanted dinner at all just felt too big in that moment. My mom took our older two kids off for the night so that DH and I could be alone with the baby. I just allowed myself some time to grieve over the situation, and I'm so grateful that my family allowed me to do that and recognized that I needed that.

Sex was weird for me too at first. I struggled with a 'disconnected' feeling in my lower half. Not literal disconnect. . . it was more of a mental thing for me. Honestly, I'm not sure what made it better. I just kept doing it anyway, and 18 months later I'm completely back to normal in that regard.

ETA: As far as c-section support, there have been a few threads around here and ICAN has some boards. ICAN was helpful for me for a while. . . but for me it kind of came to a point where it was NOT helping me move on and move past.

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#17 of 35 Old 04-12-2010, 06:07 PM
 
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I've been recovering for a month from my second, and the only real pain I'm having is with my uterus--and on the top of it (or what I'm guessing is my uterus). My incision isn't hurting at all, so I'm really not sure what's up, or if it's related to the tubal I had them do as long as they were in there.

Other than that, all is well.

I took a mile walk at 4 weeks pp and felt just fine. Unfortunately I've had more red blood since then so I'm trying to take it easy--not that it seems to be making a difference.

Last time, I started running again at 8 weeks and felt great.

The processing can be harder--especially when surrounded by natural birth messages. I'd been really hopeful for a VBAC with #2, and it didn't happen. I'm not looking forward to having to justify it to people who will write me off as uninformed or didn't try hard enough or whatever. (Short story: my water broke three days short of 37 weeks. We walked, did nipple stim, and after nothing but weenie contrax for 12 hours, started low-dose pitocin for the next 16 hours. By then the contrax were very strong, but when they checked me I was not dilated even a tiny bit.) I don't know why I didn't dilate and it was really disappointing given that I'd really thrown my whole self into visualizing my cervix dilating and telling myself I could do this through the hours of pitocin and felt very safe and comfortable. But, I didn't dilate at all and I'd been at it basically without sleep for 30 hours--not to mention the weeks of BH that I'd had!

So yeah, it stinks. Then I remind myself that it's water over the bridge. I did everything I could to have a healthy pregnancy and a "good" birth--and when I think about it realistically, I did. It wasn't perfect, but few things are in this world.

Hope the next few days bring a lot of improvements.

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#18 of 35 Old 04-12-2010, 09:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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#19 of 35 Old 04-15-2010, 10:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#20 of 35 Old 04-15-2010, 10:56 AM
 
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I always found that doctors saying that "everything looks great" was soooo dismissive and frustrating. I healed "well", but that meant that I had numbness for a long time, couldn't feel when I needed to pee for a long time (my signal was that I got cranky instead), and if I turned the wrong way or sat up I could feel pulling. Oh, and dtd hurt because of the scar. I actually got back to sex a lot faster after my HBAC with 2nd degree tearing (so much for the business of c-sections supposedly interfering less with sex). All of that went on for probably 8 months.

The thing that really turned things around for me was when I went to an osteopath because of my foot. In the course of treatment she mentioned that she could massage my scar. It felt sooooo good to have a healthcare provider acknowledging that my body was still suffering from the trauma of surgery instead of just dismissing me as "healing well" like the doctors did. On top of that validation the massage really loosened things up and made life more comfortable. I still get itchiness on my scar, but it doesn't pull like it used to.
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#21 of 35 Old 04-15-2010, 11:08 AM
 
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It took me about 3 weeks for feeling better & to be up & running around. I still took it slow though. Went for a big trip around 6 weeks. I am 9 weeks pp now & just starting to excericise/walk.

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#22 of 35 Old 04-15-2010, 07:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Does your body ever feel Really good again after a c seciton? Or is it always less happy than it was before?!
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#23 of 35 Old 04-15-2010, 07:34 PM
 
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With my first, I was okay for about 3 days (while on hospital meds) then had a horrible 4th day at home. Day 5 was the turning point - I actually felt normal...except for trying to turn over in bed or climb stairs By 2 weeks I was walking, driving and feeling pretty good. I was back to feeling completely and totally normal within 3 weeks, I'd guess.

With my second, I didn't labor first and recovery was even easier. By day 3 I was wandering the maternity ward in my old jeans. Stairs, chairs and bed were still difficult but not unbearable. I'd say back to normal within 2 weeks.

The only scar issues I ran into were tenderness at the knot, similar to what you described. It wasn't painful...but definitely tender. I also had scarline numbness for an extended period of time. For more than a year, I felt like I had a patch of nothingness about 6 inches long and 2 inches high. It slowly came back but it took 2-ish years to go completely away. I had more issues with PPD and sciatic pain than with the scar.

Honestly, every person is unique. I have horrible pain tolerance so it isn't a toughness thing...because I am a wimp. I think I happen to have a good healing gene. Every woman in my family has similar experiences (for those with c-sections) and I think we're just lucky that way. Very, very lucky.

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#24 of 35 Old 04-15-2010, 08:47 PM
 
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Does your body ever feel Really good again after a c seciton? Or is it always less happy than it was before?!
It's been my experience that I returned completely back to normal except for the faint scar across my belly. I actually feel better emotionally than I did after my second baby.

Wife to a great DH, SAHM to 3 great kids
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#25 of 35 Old 04-15-2010, 08:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It's been my experience that I returned completely back to normal except for the faint scar across my belly.
wonderful!
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#26 of 35 Old 04-21-2010, 09:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am feeling a lot better 5 weeks out. Still really rough but significantly better. My current question is regarding the incision. right now it is still an indentation and itches and burns. And I used to wear my pants and underwear right at the line where the incision is but now I can't have anything on it. WIll it always feel this way, that I can't put any clothes waistbands directly on it?
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#27 of 35 Old 04-21-2010, 09:31 PM
 
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It was a full 6 months before I could really lift anything bending over and coming up to standing without some amount of pain.

I still feel aching from time to time, and my pelvic floor is basically shot. I had long back labor with a very stuck baby prior to the emergency c-section so it's hard to say what pain and discomfort is caused by what.

Emotionally, I think it's a scar that I'll always have. I did not want a c-section but my baby didn't descend correctly. I had a midwife and a doula at my side, and major determination, and I still ended up with a c-section. Some times the best laid plans...
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#28 of 35 Old 04-22-2010, 09:58 PM
 
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Does your body ever feel Really good again after a c seciton? Or is it always less happy than it was before?!
Honestly, I felt better than I ever had in my life after my c-section. It didn't happen right away. After six weeks I felt "as good as" before, and last year, before I got pregnant, I felt awesome. I also set two personal records in races.

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My current question is regarding the incision. right now it is still an indentation and itches and burns. And I used to wear my pants and underwear right at the line where the incision is but now I can't have anything on it. WIll it always feel this way, that I can't put any clothes waistbands directly on it?
Probably not. Right now it's itching and burning because the nerves are regrowing, iirc. It stops at some point, though it might have been a year before the numbness fully went away for me. At any rate, I think I didn't notice it at all by the time I was 3 months pp. I didn't get picky about clothes again until I was pregnant the second time.

Keep in mind that I think technically you're supposed to have 8 weeks to heal after a c-sec. It's just hard to wait all that time.

And in really good news: I'm 6 weeks pp today and just went for a run. I felt pretty good, all things considered! Hopefully this is just around the corner for you.

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#29 of 35 Old 05-13-2010, 02:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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rant! So it has been 2 months since my c section. Now my whole back (especially lower and mid) is totally totally out of wack. Both the chiropractors I see are away for a couple of wks!
the c section really hurt my root chakra from front to back. I still have no interest in dtd. It still hurts a lot to just hold the bbay in my lower back. Chiro said my sacrum is pinched back. So I am still not able to walk, excersise- too excessively. I can get around but I feel weak and limited. I was supposed to see the chiro 2x a week but she unexplicably took off for some emergeny.
anyway- 8 wks past and I am still in pain- mostly in my back as a direct result of the surgery. I am so ready to feel good again. My abs feel weak. rant.
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#30 of 35 Old 05-13-2010, 03:54 PM
 
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Just read your rant and want to say that I'm sorry you're still feeling crappy!

8 weeks after my CS I still felt like crap, though it was hard to say how much was sleep deprivation, how much was breast infection, how much was extra weight, etc. I did have some nerve damage in my right foot which was still making it hard for me to walk.

I just remember how frustrated I felt and how much I just wanted things to get better already!!!! I hate being sick, I hate not being able to exercise, I hate feeling like crap, and I was so impatient to get better! So I can totally relate to that feeling!

Now it's 19 months after DD's birth and I am sooooooooo much better. I turned 40 in January and I can honestly say that I feel better at 40 than I did at 39!

I look back at those first few months and wish that I had been able to be more gentle with myself, to allow the healing process to take the time that it needed, and to just rest and recuperate. From this vantage point, my recovery seems like it was pretty fast. I mean, all the changes from pregnancy & a difficult labor just aren't going to disappear overnight. But those first few months I just felt like recovery was taking FOREVER....

Hang in there!!!

Living in Wisconsin with my partner of 20+ years and our DDenergy.gif(Born 10/09/08 ribboncesarean.gif). Why CI Mama? Because I love contact improvisation!

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