How can anything prepare you for the massive changes which happen to your body and mind in the early weeks and months of motherhood?

Even as a qualified midwife and health visitor I found those early stages really challenging as I adapted to my new role, new body and the effects of sleep deprivation. I just wanted my body to start appearing even a little like the pre-pregnancy version but so many parts of my body had changed and were virtually unrecognisable. My mind was full of worries about my beautiful baby girl and doubts about my abilities as a new mum.

The first weeks after giving birth is usually a challenging time for new mothers and the focus is well and truly on that beautiful baby. Of course this is pretty essential to establish some routines and to help make your baby feel secure and loved. It is difficult to find any time or energy to focus on yourself and very quickly you can start feeling very isolated from others and constantly tired.

What is the fourth trimester?

I’m sure you have heard of the three trimesters of pregnancy? The fourth trimester is a really important time for the new mother to adapt to her changed role, body and new life. It is the first three months following the birth of your baby.

What are the common challenges in 4th trimester?

  • Mental health: This is top of the list as this period is a very emotional rocky time, with hormones and tiredness potentially making normal worries and anxieties magnified. The social isolation can add to a drop in confidence, so getting out of the house can seem a huge challenge. There is no doubt that getting out to a group can really help with this challenge.
  • Urine leakage: This again is common due to a weakened or over tight (so exhausted) pelvic floor but is not an issue which is just to be accepted as normal after having a baby. By reconnecting and strengthening these muscles this unpleasant and embrassing problem can be resolved.
  • Weakened abdominal muscles: All women have a separation of their rectus abdominal muscles (6 pack) along the midline connective tissue called Linea Alba (White Line). This creates a Diastasis Recti, or a gap between the edges of the muscles, down the centre of the abdomen. This is normal but if these muscles don’t heal back together, it can lead to other issues including back or pelvic pain. Specific exercises can help with this challenge.
  • Prolapses in the under carriage: There are various different prolapses which can happen due to weakened pelvic floor and abdominal muscles. They lead to an uncomfortable heavy feeling ‘down below’ and urine leakage. Again specific exercise can really help.
  • Aching neck and shoulders: Many postnatal women suffer from sore muscles in their neck and shoulders in the 4th trimester, due to the challenges of feeding and caring for their babies.

How can Postnatal Rehab sessions help?

It certainly helps you get out of your house (which can sometimes be a challenge!) and meet other mothers going through similar experiences.

Breathing techniques, mindful movements, gentle yoga and relaxation help you to reconnect with parts of your body that may feel a bit strange like your pelvic floor and abdominal muscles. Once reconnected to your body then the sessions can help to realign your body and start to strengthen those area weakened by pregnancy, labour and birth.

The sessions provide a relaxed, calming space to focus on YOU and start your postnatal recovery with Lynn who is a qualified midwife, health visitor and yoga teacher/therapist.

For more details follow the LINK to visit the website to contact Lynn or book a place.

“Lynn has a calming and reassuring presence and is always sure to check in with everyone in each class. The yoga is challenging enough but she is great at giving adaptations if your post natal body needs more gentle stretching while it recovers.”

Louise, Postnatal sessions