Whether you planed on having a C-section or it was a last minute call made by your physician, there are plenty of questions you'll be asking yourself about your postnatal care. Toting around your newborn is a big deal, so it's totally normal to wonder, can you drive after a C-section?
According to New Health Advisor, your doctor might instruct you to wait six weeks before driving. Because the pain you incur from a C-section might inhibit you from making the types of instinctive responses that are so vital to being behind the wheel, you want to make sure you're totally healed and ready to deal with the open road.
Another point New Health Advisor made was that apprehension can hinder your ability to drive with your usual confidence, so make sure you feel up to par before having to deal with someone cutting you off, or worse yet, someone else's road rage. Another thing to consider is that driving might loosen the stitches of your C-section, a concern raised on the Baby Center message boards. And if you're on pain medication, heed the warning and don't operate any heavy machinery, like a vehicle. Although The New York Times reported that drivers under the influence of pain management medicine are hard to convict if they cause a tragic accident, you don't want to put yourself in that position, right? Again, make sure you get clearance from your physician if you're on pain meds about what you can and cannot do.
According to Parents, the first week after a C-section can be traumatic (don't worry, time heals this wound.) There's lots of vaginal blood and discharge, and it might take up to three days post delivery for you to be able to walk comfortably. Because exercise is off limits for six weeks postpartum, depending on how your body handles the surgery, you might not even want to drive. In the same article, one woman describes how she experienced pain going over bumps in the passenger's seat on her way home from the hospital, so she didn't want to take the wheel herself until she was fully healed.
Of course, every woman's C-section experience is different, because everyone reacts to surgery in a variety of ways. Hey, I was out of commission for a week when I had my wisdom teeth removed. But in the case of a C-section, you have a new baby that makes all your trials — and that might mean postponing driving — worth it.