8 Changes After 8 Weeks
So it has been 8 weeks since I was blessed with my little baby boy! It is amazing how fast time flies, and how quickly he is growing! I am doing my best to stay healthy for my physical and mental well-being. I have been walking lots, and graduated up to jogging and running again. I am trying my best with my diet, but to be honest, it is difficult to eat as healthy as I should with lack of sleep and multitasking with a newborn. Despite the efforts I have made thus far, here are 8 changes that I believe the vast majority of women eight weeks after childbirth may notice!
Breasts: Throughout pregnancy my breasts grew, but once I started nursing, they grew to a whole new level. Not only does the breast size increase but also the areola itself gets larger and darker throughout pregnancy to help with nursing. I have also noticed some asymmetries which are quite common for many women with one breast changing more than the other. I am wondering how much they will shrink and drop after I stop breastfeeding.
Hair: I have always had hair on thinner side, but was pleased during pregnancy, as many women notice that their hair gets much thicker and fuller during pregnancy. However, this fullness is short lived. After pregnancy, many women experience hair loss and thinning hair.
Wrinkles: My wrinkles slowly returned as I stopped using Botox during pregnancy. They are now in full effect, as it has been almost a year since I was last injected. My plan is to restart as soon as I stop nursing. There are no studies showing Botox while nursing to be hazardous, but I it is not FDA approved either because it has not been fully tested.
Stretch Marks: With rapid changes in weight and hormones, stretch marks are common during pregnancy. The connective tissue gets stretched, and the dermis and epidermis get damaged leaving stretch marks. We know that hormones play an important role in the development of stretch marks, which makes them so incredibly common during pregnancy.
Uterus: My uterus has finally shrunk back down! During pregnancy the uterus grows to over 2 pounds, and can hold around 10 liters. It starts shrinking immediately after delivery, and continues to shrink about a one centimeter a day until it is about 60 grams, and holds 5 mls over about 6 weeks.
Scars: Every person and every pregnancy is different, but all women have some scarring inside and out. C-section scars are more obvious to the eye; however, even with uneventful deliveries, scarring exists in the uterus.
The Pouch: With the uterus growing and skin stretching and then shrinking again, most women notice a pouch in the lower abdomen. The abdominal muscles have to stretch to make room for baby and are often quite weakened. Some women have a large separation of the muscles called a rectus diastasis. As the muscle gets stronger, the appearance can improve but may not go away on its own depending on the width of separation between the muscles.
Back Aches: Back pains are very common. Although there are numerous causes, I believe mine is likely from nursing the baby and carrying him around with less than ideal posture. I never knew how amazing a warm bath could feel on tired muscles.
Some of these changes are temporary and self-limiting, and some may need some professional help. The good news is that I know who and how to get it at Cosmetic Surgery Affiliates! Each month I will continue to give updates of my progress as a cosmetic surgeon turned mom.