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Your uterus begins to shrink back to pre-baby size after birth almost immediately on its own, but there are some things you can do to help your uterus shrink back to is normal and small size. You might want to help your uterus shrink back to normal fast in an effort to help your body. Supporting your body postpartum is always a good idea, especially after the 9 months of pregnancy.
During the first 48 hours, you most-likely will feel your uterus contracting back to normal. It can be less noticeable with your fist, but is often felt more after the second or third baby. Either way, those contractions after birth means your body is already getting to work and shrinking your uterus.
Helping your uterus shrink back after baby is very important for health reasons, not just getting a flat tummy.
When your uterus shrinks, it is slowing down and eliminating the blood heading to the uterus, which eliminates blood clots and excess bleeding or hemorrhaging post-birth. If you’ve ever given birth in a hospital, this is what the nurses are checking new mamas for when they feel if your uterus is hardening and shrinking back to normal.
Here are some ways you can help your uterus shrink back fast after baby:
First, breastfeeding a lot:
Breastfeeding is a natural way to help your body contract the uterus. Breastfeeding causes the hormone, Oxytocin to surge through your body, which makes a new mama feel very relaxed and sleepy, as well as contracting the uterus. Oxytocin causes the muscles in the uterus to contract and pull in. This is the contractions and tightening often felt in the first few days or weeks of breastfeeding a new baby. These contractions tie off the blood vessels that were supplying the uterus and baby, and the more contractions the better. Breastfeeding is the number one method to ensure you are encouraging your uterus to contract and pull back in.
Second, a postpartum belly wrap:
A postpartum wrap is very helpful because it encourages your uterus with helpful support from the outside. This helpful pressure and support is extra encourages the uterus. Think of a belly band as an extra hand. The belly band is like having someone help you with a bag of groceries or lift something. Your uterus can use an extra hand as it is contracting.
Eat healthy and small meals/snacks:
Eating healthy isn’t just for losing weight while breastfeeding. A healthy diet helps your body by giving it the nutrients it needs to repair cells, heal itself and produce breast milk. By giving your body natural, wholesome foods, it can shuttle the nutrients to where they need to go, and then repair itself and put energy into contracting the uterus. By sticking to smaller meals, you can keep your blood sugar stable and put less pressure on your uterus from the inside by having an stuffed tummy. This will also help your abs come back together quicker too because your stomach will stay smaller, but you will still have lots of nutrients coming in. If you need help knowing what and how to eat, please check out my program, The Postpartum Cure. It is a complete breastfeeding diet, meal plan and shopping list with an ab rehab and pelvic floor restore program that also helps the uterus! It all comes in an app, which makes it easy to navigate and access!
Massage your uterus:
Massaging your uterus is just like massaging any other muscle. It is good to work the muscle by increasing blood flow to that muscle. Increasing blood flow to the muscle means also increasing nutrients and vitamins. Here’s a great tutorial on how to massage your uterus.
Take long, easy walks:
Walking is good for the mind, body and soul as a new mommy. It also gets your lymphatic system working, which helps with healing, and encourages your muscles to stay strong all over. Our bodies need slow, easy motion, and it will get everything healing and working well. Here’s a great article with some major benefits of walking in general, and you will find it encourages your uterus to work hard and contract!
Lastly, be patient:
Your body spent 9 months stretching and expanding, so it is going to take some time for your body to find normalcy again. Don’t put extra pressure on yourself by setting goals to have a flat tummy. Rather than focusing on how big your belly still is, think about how you can help your uterus contract, and overall how you can take care of yourself each day.
If you need help losing the baby weight and keeping up your milk supply, I have a very popular program, The Postpartum Cure, which provides you with your diet and nutrition plan to lose weight, not milk supply!