My C-section was as different from my birthing plan as it could possibly get. I wanted an unmedicated birth, and instead I found myself struggling to get up from a horizontal position for three weeks while I Googled how long does it take to heal after a C-section ad nauseam.
From some of the stories I've heard, I had a pretty great C-section recovery. I didn't ever fill the prescription the doctors gave me for pain pills and felt pretty great after a few weeks. But regardless of how awesome I felt, I knew I had to follow my doctor's guidelines on recovery and healing. A C-section is major surgery and just because I got an adorable baby out of it and felt like I could move furniture around to create the ultimate space for her didn't mean I should.
According to the Mayo Clinic, most doctors will want to conduct a postpartum check-up on you at six weeks, but some may choose to see you earlier so they can check the C-section incision. During those six weeks of recovery however, you've probably been advised not to work out, to take it easy, and to not lift anything heavier than your baby. You may not even be allowed to drive. But at that six week check-up, your doctor will make sure everything has healed, including your uterus and abdomen, as well as your C-section incision.
Parents noted that around four weeks post-surgery, you're most likely feeling back to your old self as long as everything has healed and progressed well, but it's still important to go slow. Everyone's body is different and so is everyone's recovery. You still should follow your doctor's precautions and guidelines until you get the all-clear at your final check-up.
Although most doctors suggest that six weeks is the average recovery time for a C-section, take note that you may still be sore or not quite at 100 percent at six weeks. Remember, you underwent major surgery, so even if your doctor says you're fully healed, listen to your body and know when to ask for help and take it slow. (I promise you, eventually you'll be able to laugh, cough, and sneeze without screaming profanity or holding your stomach in pain. I promise.)