Vaginal changes after childbirth - What to expect?
by Gaurav Bedi on Mar 21, 2023
Have you ever pondered the state of your vagina after birth? Will things be “normal” down there, or will they be forever changed? Since your body goes through many changes during pregnancy, it’s pretty normal to think about your vaginal condition after childbirth.
While every labor and delivery is different, knowing what happens to your vagina after pregnancy and birth will help ease your mind. Hence, without further ado, continue scrolling and walk through a guide entailing changes you should expect after you push out a human being.
6 Things To Expect With Your Vagina After Pregnancy & Childbirth
Are you anxiously awaiting your baby, but deep down, you worry about your vaginal state post-childbirth? Well, you are not alone in the club, as every pregnant woman goes through such scary thoughts.
You must keep in mind that vaginas don’t magically return to their place after delivery, as they’ve gone through a major ordeal involving hours of labor. Hence, to cut through the clutter, we have compiled the six significant changes you can expect from your vagina after birth. Scroll through them and find exactly what to prepare for.
Let’s start with the obvious. You can expect vaginal stretching after giving birth to a baby; however, how much stretching you experience depends on several factors, including your genetics, the size of the baby, and the number of deliveries you’ve had before.
In addition to these variables, the circumstances of the birth, how long you push, and whether the vacuum extraction or forceps are required also play a vital role. Remember that your vagina will stretch a bit more with each progressive birth.
The second most common change you can expect after childbirth is postpartum bleeding. This can continue for up to four to six weeks; however, the time might vary from woman to woman.
You can expect heavy bleeding during the first ten days, and this is all normal as your body discards extra blood and tissue from your uterus. After ten days, the bleeding slows down, but you will continue to bleed lightly for a few weeks,
If you have had a normal delivery, you can expect your vagina to feel tender and uncomfortable. Even if your perineum remained in place during the baby’s arrival, the vaginal area has still been stretched and bruised.
When a baby passes through, you’ll inevitably experience internal bruising. While you can’t see that, you’ll feel soreness for some time. The pain may worsen when you cough or sneeze, and you may hurt when sitting down for a few days.
Also, if you have had a tear after a vaginal delivery, you will probably have scar tissue in your vagina afterward. But the best thing is that the soreness, discomfort, and scar tissue will fade and heal with each passing day.
Once you are done with pregnancy and childbirth, you will feel looser down there, and that’s pretty normal. But the good thing is that it tends to return to its original place after some time gradually. However, you must be calm and patient in such a case, as the process happens slowly.
Also, if you have a large baby or have had many babies, it might not return to exactly the way it was before, and you should be prepared for this change. You can easily check whether your vagina has regained its original place by inserting a regular tampon. If it ends up sliding out over time, it indicates that your vagina is still wider than it was pre-birth.
No wonder you can expect a slight change in your periods when they return post-childbirth. It could be different than before getting pregnant, and that’s all because of hormonal changes in the body.
You could either end up with a lighter or heavier period. In addition to the intensity, you might also feel a change in the duration. Your period can be either short or long, depending on your body.
Since the estrogen level lowers dramatically after childbirth, it thins out the tissue in the vagina, thus increasing vaginal dryness after birth. Without enough estrogen, you will not have the same level of moisture as it was before delivery, thus causing vaginal dryness. The condition multiplies by manifolds if you are breastfeeding, as it suppresses estrogen.
However, the best thing is that the dryness should dissipate after some time, and you will start feeling normal once you stop breastfeeding your baby. In the meantime, you can help lube that can help relieve discomfort.
So, that’s all about what to expect from the vagina after pregnancy and childbirth. While some of these changes can be frustrating and painful, remember that they are normal and natural. Hence, don’t get embarrassed and make yourself ready for the fact that your vagina before and after birth will never be exactly the same.