But finally, the quivering 9-month wait ended - and one more little man was born. And the new mother, in addition to excitement, also added a lot of questions. And one of them is when menstruation begins after childbirth. And this is quite a logical and important moment for the woman who gave birth, since in this case the restoration of menstruation can be called a kind of indicator of her state of health. Are there any specific dates for the resumption of this function of the female body and what they depend on.
Monthly after childbirth: recovery mechanism
Childbirth is the countdown point when the mother's body begins its recovery process. From this depends largely on what will be the first periods after childbirth. It takes about 1.5-2 months to restore, since both the pregnancy and the childbirth themselves make significant changes to the work of the woman’s organs and systems.
In particular, the hormonal system is “modified”, for which it may take more time to reverse. This is due to the fact that delivery through the pituitary activates the production of the hormone prolactin. It is this hormone that not only triggers the formation of breast milk, but also inhibits the maturation of the egg in the ovary. That is, ovulation does not occur and the cycle is “idle”. This explains the well-known fact that nursing mothers have a rather long period of menstruation after childbirth.
Another step in the recovery of the mother’s body after the birth of the baby is the involution of the uterus, that is, its return to its original, prenatal size. In this case, the uterus is not only gradually reduced, but also heals, since its inner surface is significantly damaged during childbirth. And this period of healing is accompanied by specific secretions, called lochia. Depending on the characteristics of delivery and the condition of the young mother, they can last up to 2 months after delivery. Therefore, some take them for menstruation after childbirth. In fact, the Lochia has nothing in common with them, since they have a bloody nature in the first days after birth, then become succinic (pinkish-yellow), and from the 10th day brighten, gradually decrease to 1-1.5 months altogether cease.
The timing of the onset of menstruation
As already mentioned, the period when menstruation comes after childbirth, initially depends on whether a woman uses the nature of breastfeeding. In this case, the way she gave birth - independently, with anesthesia or by caesarean section does not matter.
Depending on how the baby eats, you can conditionally allocate 4 options of terms when his mother begins to have menstruation again:
If a mother feeds her child exclusively with her milk and without any regimen, that is, on demand, then there may not be a month or more. That is exactly as much as she will adhere to such a feeding scheme,
- if the baby has been given complementary food on the mother’s milk, the consumption of this milk is reduced and the first periods after childbirth can already be expected,
- if the baby initially receives a mixed diet, then menstruation usually occurs as early as 3-4 months after his birth,
- mothers of babies-artificials do not have any physiological obstacles to rapid recovery, so their first cycle can occur in general in 1-2 months.
Of course, these terms are conditional and very individual, therefore you cannot take them for an absolute axiom. Especially when it comes to contraception. Since there are cases when menstruation comes after childbirth rather quickly and in absolutely breast moms.
Monthly after childbirth: when to wait for the recovery cycle
Not less important question for many women who gave birth, what will be the cycle now. Indeed, the nature of the menstrual cycle after childbirth can significantly change in the direction of improvement, and in the direction of deterioration. Therefore, the first menstruation after childbirth may not be as large in volume, soreness, duration. For example, if before giving birth the uterus with bends gave a rather painful accompaniment to the month, then after delivery, in most cases, it straightens and the pain syndrome goes away. The duration of the cycle also changes - menstrual periods after childbirth often fit into the average indicators of the cycle (25-28 days).
It should also be noted that the nature of the recovery of the menstrual cycle after childbirth can be affected by many factors:
1. the course of pregnancy, childbirth and their complications,
2. the nature of food and lifestyle,
4. the presence of chronic pathologies
5. emotional comfort.
Another important detail that needs to be noted when menstruation begins after childbirth is their regularity. The so-called "commissioning" of the ovaries occurs within a few months, so failures in the first 4-6 cycles should not scare you.
At the same time there are a number of signs that indicate that something is interfering with the restoration. These include:
- interruptions in the cycle of menstruation after childbirth, even six months later,
- too meager or too heavy periods, as well as rather long smearing discharge or discharge with an unpleasant odor,
- short (1-2 days) or long periods,
- too painful periods.
In this case, it is necessary to visit your gynecologist, since this may be a sign of not only hormonal disorders, but also diseases of inflammatory or even neoplastic nature.
When the cycle is restored after childbirth
On the question of when the menstrual cycle is restored after childbirth, the exact answer is impossible to obtain. On average, it returns to normal 6–8 months after the birth of the child.
The main factor affecting the cycle is lactation.
In breastfeeding women in childbirth menstruation begins after the introduction of complementary foods to the child's diet. For many moms, menstruation does not occur until breastfeeding is complete.
When the baby is on mixed feeding, that is, in addition to the mother's milk, he gets another mixture, menstruation will begin earlier. This happens about 3-4 months after the birth of the baby.
If the baby is fully artificial, and there was no breastfeeding at all, the period between the mother and her mother can begin within two months, or even a month after giving birth.
What determines the speed of recovery cycle
Several factors affect the recovery of the menstrual cycle after birth:
- individual features of the body,
- course of pregnancy
- baby feeding method.
From the moment of ovulation and fertilization of the egg until the birth of the baby, the hormone progesterone “reigns” in the woman’s body. He is fully responsible for carrying the fetus, preparing the body for childbirth and breastfeeding. After the baby is born, the level of progesterone decreases sharply, and instead, the hormone prolactin, which is responsible for the production of breast milk, rises.
Under the action of prolactin, the production of estrogen and progesterone is blocked, therefore almost all nursing women have no monthly periods. With the introduction of complementary foods, the need for the formation of milk decreases, respectively, and the level of prolactin in the blood decreases. At this point, the cycle may begin its recovery.
If the baby does not have enough breast milk, and it is started to be fed with mixtures, this means that the level of prolactin in the mother’s body is not high enough. In such cases, menstruation comes after full recovery of the body, and this is about 3-4 months of the baby's life. According to statistics, such women after the recovery cycle, the level of prolactin falls even more, and the baby is completely transferred to the mixture.
If the woman did not breastfeed at all, her period will begin in about two months. That is how much time the uterus takes in order to return to its former form.
All of the above factors are relatively conditional. The main thing for the restoration of menstruation is the general condition of a woman, the presence of chronic diseases in her.
Pregnancy makes major changes in the work of all organs and systems. The harder it is leaking, the longer the body will return to its original state. Only after full recovery, the reproductive system will resume its functionality, because the beginning of menstruation is a signal that the body is ready for a new pregnancy.
The cycle recovery process can be delayed if the woman in labor is constantly subjected to stressful loads, is fed incompletely, has bad habits and does not adhere to the correct sleep and wakefulness regime.
The sequence of the resumption of the cycle after delivery
From the moment of birth, the postpartum recovery period begins. At this time, all organs and systems return to their usual form and resume typical functionality. This process is called involution.
The greatest involutional changes affect the uterus. Immediately after giving birth, it weighs about 900 grams and occupies a large area. By the second week, the uterus is halved, and in 6–8 weeks it returns to its usual size.
The outer cervix of the cervix is formed within three weeks, if there were no breaks. Otherwise, this process is slightly delayed. Changes are also taking place in the cervical canal itself: it has a cylindrical shape before delivery, after which it is slit-shaped.
When the placenta is rejected after birth, the inner part of the uterus remains an open wound. By the eighth week, the mucosa of the organ is completely restored to its former form. As the woman heals, she may notice secretions called lochia. The nature of them throughout the postpartum period is changing.
In the first days of lochia, they are abundant; they contain blood and particles of a detached mucous membrane. Somewhere from the fourth day they are serous and hemorrhagic in nature, and by the second week the discharge becomes more transparent, almost does not contain blood, their number decreases.
From the third week of discharge, they become much smaller, they acquire a slimy character, and from the fifth, the lochia stops.
In the postpartum period, the ovaries also undergo changes. The corpus luteum, which the entire pregnancy secreted progesterone, ceases its functionality. Hormonal background gradually begins to recover, the ovaries begin to re-form follicles.
How to restore the cycle after a cesarean section
Restoration of the cycle after delivery, which was carried out by the method of Caesarean section, usually goes the same way as after natural delivery. The process of involution and the restoration of the functionality of the ovaries may be delayed in such cases:
- the woman had a difficult operation and anesthesia,
- the operation was complicated by the inflammatory process.
In the situations described above, it is necessary to consult a doctor.
How to restore the menstrual cycle after childbirth
With her milk, a nursing mother gives the child a lot of nutrients, thereby causing a shortage of them in her body. In order to avoid problems due to the lack of vitamins and microelements, a woman’s diet should include all food groups that are classified as healthy foods. Required in the diet of vegetables, meat, fish, dairy products, fruits.
It will not be superfluous to take multivitamins with a complex of trace elements designed specifically for nursing mothers.
A very important point is the normalization of sleep mothers. The body must take time to rest so that it can fully function. Lack of sleep leads to discomfort, smoothly turning into chronic fatigue.
A young mother should in every way protect themselves from stressful situations. Nervous tension, stress, negative emotions can negatively affect the body. Stress is also able to provoke an exacerbation of chronic diseases.
Many women ask: "How to restore the cycle of folk remedies?". It is possible to help hormonal background to return to normal with the help of herbs, but it is imperative that such treatment should be coordinated with the gynecologist.
To normalize the hormonal background is well suited infusion of the following herbs:
- parsley root, peony, chamomile pharmacy - 3 spoons each,
- yarrow, St. John's wort, mountain ash, tansy - 2 spoons each,
- valerian roots and licorice, wormwood, thyme - 1 spoonful.
All this pour 1 liter of boiling water and let it brew. Take 1 glass before bedtime.
To restore the hormonal background, tincture of boron uterus and vodka in a ratio of 1:10 will also be useful. It is necessary to insist on this remedy for two weeks. Take the tincture should be 20 drops three times daily before meals with water.
A woman must remember that her future health depends on how well and quickly she recovers after giving birth. At the first suspicious symptoms, you should immediately consult a doctor - any pathology in the early stages is easier to treat.
Features of the menstrual cycle after childbirth
Why menstruation does not occur so long, almost a year, when they begin, how long the menstruation will be and whether it will be painful - all this interests women in the last months of pregnancy.
Changes in the body of a pregnant woman are caused by the restructuring of the hormonal status. For the absence of regular periods during pregnancy, hormone progesterone is responsible. It begins to be produced in the corpus luteum (a temporary gland in the ovary) immediately after ovulation and is produced up to 10–12 weeks of gestation. Then the synthesis of progesterone carries the placenta. After giving birth, the corpus luteum finally ceases to exist, the placenta emerges from the uterine cavity, and the mechanisms for restoring the regular cycle are triggered.
In contrast to these processes, as soon as the child was born, and it was applied to the breast, prolactin, a hormone produced in the hypothalamus of the puerperal being breastfed and actively stimulating milk production (lactation), begins to be actively synthesized. Why not start a new cycle with breastfeeding? Due to the suppression of prolactin maturation of the egg (ovulation) and, as a consequence, blocking menstruation. The recovery of the cycle after childbirth depends on how smoothly these processes go.
It should not be confused with menstruation postpartum discharge - lochia. They are similar to normal cyclical bleeding, but they are not and are not accompanied by ovulation. In fact, it is bleeding from the place of attachment of the placenta in the uterine cavity. Lochia is a mixture of blood clots, pieces of the endometrium and mucus. Abundant and bright red in the first days after birth, in the subsequent discharge becomes pinkish-yellow. Their number can reach 1400 g per week. As the uterus wall heals, the lochia becomes light, scanty, and free of blood. Postpartum discharge can take a long time — up to eight weeks.
When do menstruations begin after birth?
There is no exact and uniform period for the return of a normal menstrual cycle after childbirth. The time when menstruation begins after childbirth is individual for each woman. There are certain signs by which one can approximately predict when the first periods after childbirth will begin, and expectant mothers should preferably know them. This is necessary in order to avoid double load (after all, repeated pregnancy in a nursing woman can significantly deplete her body), and also not to miss a condition that requires urgent medical intervention.
The rate of recovery of regular menstrual bleeding does not depend on how the birth went - whether the woman bore herself or her cesarean section.
The physiological impetus to the appearance of menstruation after childbirth is a reduction in the production of pituitary gland hormone lactation (prolactin) due to a reduction in the amount of breast milk produced or a complete cessation of breastfeeding. This usually happens in the fourth month after the baby is born.
What conditions accelerate the return of menstruation:
- too rare attachment of the baby to the breast,
- feeding the child with water or feeding it with a mixture,
- at intervals between feedings for more than 6 hours, especially at night (at the peak of prolactin production).
Active breastfeeding and late complementary feeding may delay the return cycle by one year.
If a young mother does not breastfeed a child from birth (no milk, acute infectious diseases), menstrual bleeding can recover as early as 4–8 weeks after the end of pregnancy. Monthly a month after childbirth should be differentiated from lochia.
The nature of the first menstruation after childbirth
- Anovulatory. Despite the fact that 14 days after the end of lochia, the first menstruation may begin, usually it is not accompanied by the maturation of the egg and its exit into the fallopian tubes from the ovary.
- It is not significant how much menstruation goes after childbirth and how abundant the discharge is, the subsequent menstruation will be different. Главное, они не должны быть обильнее 50 мл в сутки, а продолжительность их не должна быть дольше 10 дней.
The onset of the first menstruation after childbirth does not mean their full recovery. The cycle may be irregular for a long time. It will become stable after complete restoration of the hormonal regulation of the reproductive system after delivery. This usually occurs in 4 to 5 months. The first few periods come early or with a delay. The too short break between the first and second cyclic bleedings (about 10 days) or too long (more than 3 months) should alert.
Factors affecting the recovery of menstruation after childbirth
Not only breastfeeding affects the start of the cycle. External and internal factors, their interaction also plays an important role.
Lengthen the recovery period of the normal cycle or increase the risk that menstruation will not come:
- wrong day regimen
- lack of proper sleep and nutrition,
- chronic diseases (diabetes mellitus, arterial hypertension, thyroid pathology),
- complicated course of pregnancy (gestosis of the II-III trimester, severe edema, eclampsia),
- difficult childbirth (with bleeding, hypertension),
- postpartum depression.
All this is due to a violation of the control of ovarian function - failure of pituitary hormone production.
Features of the recovery period of regular menstruation
Recovery of menstruation is not a hindrance or contraindication for breastfeeding. It is believed that the baby at this time may refuse to take the breast. This is not associated with changes in the quality of milk - it can just change the mother's smell, to which the child is very sensitive.
If, before pregnancy, a woman was disturbed by painful menstrual bleeding, then after pregnancy, a decrease in pain is noted. This is due to the change in the shape of the uterus and its position in the abdominal cavity.
It is important to follow the rules of personal hygiene during postpartum hemorrhage (lohii) and during the recovery period of the menstrual cycle. For six months, the use of tampons is contraindicated. It is recommended to use gaskets with a smooth surface, which must be changed every three hours. If personal hygiene products have to be changed more often, consultation with a doctor is necessary - perhaps this is a sign of uterine bleeding.
Refrain from having sex for two months. Sex without barrier contraceptives (condoms) is contraindicated due to the risk of infection of the uterus.
It should be remembered that a nursing woman can become pregnant again, even if there was no first postpartum menstrual bleeding. Ovulation occurs, and the egg leaves the ovary 13-16 days before menstruation. Since ovulation does not have external signs, a woman can not guess that her body is already capable of conception.
Situations requiring medical supervision
The restoration of regular menstrual bleeding requires the coordinated work of many body systems. Failure of one of the systems can cause various violations of the cycle.
Types and causes of failures:
- Menstruation does not appear within eight weeks, despite the fact that the woman has already finished breastfeeding or the baby is initially artificial. It is necessary to exclude the pathology of the reproductive system (endometriosis, inflammation of the ovaries, inflammation of the uterus) or hormonal failure (excessive production of prolactin). The cause of an excess of prolactin may be a pituitary tumor (prolactinoma). It is benign in nature and develops due to insufficient thyroid function.
- Irregular periods after childbirth. Pathological is a break between menstruation for more than three months. The reason may be in violation of the hormonal balance. Also, do not forget about the possibility of pregnancy after the first postpartum menstruation, even if breastfeeding continues.
- Abundant bleeding, requiring the replacement of hygiene products more than once every two hours, is regarded as bleeding from the uterine cavity. In this case, an urgent medical consultation is required. Especially if the discharge has an unpleasant smell, brown or scarlet shade of blood, a large number of clots.
- If the duration of bleeding is more than 10 days, uterine bleeding should be excluded.
- Excessive and prolonged bleeding can cause iron deficiency anemia. Even if the bleeding corresponds to the conditional norm, but the woman has frequent dizziness, feeling of weakness and rapid fatigue, it is necessary to control the level of hemoglobin in the blood.
- Pathology is considered if less than 14 days elapsed between the time of termination of lochia and the onset of new bleeding.
- If there were childbirths complicated by heavy bleeding, sepsis, or severe preeclampsia, Shihan syndrome may develop (necrosis of the pituitary cells). In this case, even after the cessation of lactation, the monthly cyclical bleeding either does not come at all or is restored, but the discharge is scarce, smearing.