When your body does something embarrassing, it's always comforting to learn that you're not alone. There's nothing better than hearing "me too," after you quietly confess to a group of fellow moms that you pee in your pants more often than you ever expected. The truth is, there are some "gross" things all postpartum bodies do that are perfectly normal, and pretty universal for women in the months after delivering. Sure, there are those few lucky ladies who bounce back from delivery and feel like their body returns to normal within days. But if you are among the vast majority, it's going to take some time for things to go back to being how you remember.
Keep in mind that for the duration of your pregnancy your body underwent a litany of changes. From a growing belly to changing hormones and back again, being pregnant altered your body for the better part of a year, and time is needed for those things to balance back out to your pre-pregnancy state. Not to mention you're healing from the incredible feat of delivering a human. So don't be discouraged if you experience any of these gross things while living in your postpartum body. Keep in mind it's temporary and, more importantly, you're in good company.
1. You Have Bloody Discharge
You may be shocked at how much fluid you loose during delivery, but what can be even more shocking is the slow drain of bodily fluids after childbirth. Lochia is a postpartum vaginal discharge made up of leftover blood from the uterus, and can hang around longer for weeks or month, as What To Expect's website explained.
2. You Notice Blood Clots During Your First Postpartum Period
There's no predictor for when that first postpartum period will strike and when it does, there could be an unwelcome surprise. According to Healthline, many woman notice blood clots once their period returns after giving birth. This could just be the body's way of getting back into the swing of your cycle after a nine month hiatus.
3. You Spray Milk Involuntarily
You may have heard that it's possible for your breast to spray breastmilk without your permission, and it's totally true. "Oxytocin, the hormone that causes the contractions felt during orgasm, is also responsible for the milk ejection reflex, or letdown," as Baby Center pointed out. It's most likely to happen during sex or when you're sexually aroused.
4. Accidental Peeing
Sneezing, cough, laughing, and even a jumping jack can cause you to accidentally pee your pants after you've given birth. Urinary problems such as incontinence are common postpartum, as the website for the March of Dimes explained. So it's best to keep a few panty liners on hand if you want to keep your undies dry.
According to Baby Center, postpartum constipation is very common, since your bowel system takes time to function regularly after baby. Try some stool softener and downing some extra fiber to get things moving and avoid bloating and gassiness.
6. Sweat, Sweat, And More Sweat
Feeling like a sweaty mess ever since you gave birth? You're not alone. Many new mamas are cranking the fan to high and putting extra ice in their tea. According to Self magazine, your body needs to release the extra fluid you carried during pregnancy, which means you may find you're sweating more than ever before.
7. Hair Loss
Those hairballs on the couch can't be blamed on the cat — it's your tresses that just can't seem to stay put. If you're loosing more hair than average after delivery, it's just your body releasing all the extra it produced during pregnancy, as Parents magazine explained.
8. Body Odor Increases
As Babble explained, the changes in hormones can cause a strange or strong odor for some women in the postpartum phase. But it's nothing that regular showering and a little deodorant can't fix, and once those hormones balance back out, the smell should disappear.
9. Lingering Linea Nigra
If you developed a dark line down the center of your belly during pregnancy, it may be a while before it fades. As Babble explained, linea nigra can hang around for as long as 18 months postpartum.
10. Vaginal Dryness
Post-delivery, a decrease in vaginal lubrication is normal, as Healthline pointed out. During this time, keeping lube at the ready will help you enjoy sex, pain free. Eventually, your natural lubrication will return and you'll feel more like yourself.