Being a mom is one of the most beautiful feelings in the world. But just like your life changes after bringing home a baby, your body also goes through many biological changes during and after pregnancy. If you are reading this because you are wondering why your period hasn’t returned after your pregnancy, then we have got you covered.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to life, and you cannot expect to have the same postpartum experience as another person. Countless factors play a role in your body’s healing process. Irregular or absent periods, though quite annoying and stressful, can be the result of hormonal regulations for readjusting the menstrual cycle after giving birth. In fact, not having a postpartum period for 5-6 months is pretty normal. However, it may exceed several months if you choose to breastfeed your newborn.
How to Get Period Back After Baby
There is simply no way of knowing when you will get your first period after pregnancy as the first postpartum period depends heavily on your nutritional intake, whether you decide to breastfeed, and even your unique hormonal balance.
If you stop breastfeeding, your first postpartum period will probably arrive within a few weeks. However, worrying about missed periods can delay the process further as hormones are affected by stress and anxiety levels.
Sexual and Reproductive Health After Having a Baby
A woman’s sexual and reproductive health also goes through some changes after giving birth. You can get pregnant again a minimum of six weeks after your previous baby even if you decide to breastfeed.
Some people assume that childbirth or breastfeeding acts as natural birth control, which is a misconception. Although it may act as a contraception to some extent, do not rely on breastfeeding as birth control.
Having a child right after pregnancy is a couple’s personal choice. But consulting a doctor or specialist to suggest a proper diet plan and getting proper medications for healthy conception and pregnancy is always best so that mother and child both get their proper nutrition. It also helps to avoid implantation bleeding.
Periods After Pregnancy
Once you get your postpartum period after stopping breastfeeding, you may experience inconsistencies. Most women have long delays during the menstrual cycle while others face irregular periods and heavier or lighter flow as compared to their pre-baby periods.
Painful periods characterized by severe cramps with heavier bleeding than normal are also common with your first postpartum periods. If you face conditions such as blood clots in the first few cycles or unbearable cramps, seek medical assistance or visit your gynecologist.
There is no guaranteed way to know when you’ll get your first postpartum period. What you can do is keep a check on your diet and follow the diet plan suggested by your medical specialist. Also, keep your hormones balanced by meditating and maintaining a low stress level.
Why Do My Periods Delay After Giving Birth?
If you are breastfeeding your child, then inconsistencies in periods and delays in the first postpartum period are normal. This is because when a mother is breastfeeding two major hormones are produced, oxytocin and prolactin. Both these hormones suppress ovulation. It leads to irregular periods and delays in the first postpartum period.
Can I Get Pregnant While Not Having My Periods After Child Birth?
Suppressed ovulation doesn’t mean you can’t get pregnant soon after having a baby. Your ovaries will release their first postpartum egg before menstruating, so there is a chance you could get pregnant in the time period between six and eight weeks.
Additionally, women usually lose track of their ovulation after childbirth or stop taking their birth control pills when they are not getting their periods. In such cases, doctors recommend following long-term solutions to avoid immediate pregnancy after giving birth.
If you do not want to get pregnant soon after having a baby, you may want to investigate birth control implants such as Nexplanon or Implanon. Another option is to use an IUD (Intrauterine Device), which prevents the sperm from fertilizing the egg and hence prevents pregnancy. Finally, injections such as Depo-Provera contain a hormone known as progestin which suppresses ovulation and needs to be taken every three months.
Will My First Few Periods After Giving Birth Be Different?
Everyone will experience postpartum differently. You may feel a little bit of change, no change at all, or an obvious change in your first menstrual cycle flow after the pregnancy is over.
During a regular monthly menstrual cycle, the uterus sheds its outer linings and you experience a normal amount of blood flow. But during pregnancy, the uterus builds up thick linings to nourish and hold the baby. It swells during nine months of pregnancy and shrinks after delivery. So you may have a different experience with your initial postpartum periods. With each pregnancy, you may experience different changes in your menstrual cycle.
Will the Periods Be Irregular?
Your postpartum periods may be irregular and you may experience heavy menstrual flow. Irregularity during postpartum periods is normal as your body has been through severe hormonal changes, uterine thickenings, labor pain, breastfeeding, and postpartum healing.
Common irregularities noticed among women after child delivery include:
- Irregularity in the number of days of bleeding. For example, bleeding occurs four days instead of six days.
- Time periods between menstrual flow may exceed 30 to 45 days.
- Blood flow immediately following giving birth.
Know that most women will return to a regular period soon after they stop breastfeeding their child.
No Period After Giving Birth
The menstrual cycle will likely change after giving birth. Having irregular postpartum periods is not necessarily a cause of concern. As your body is going through natural changes to heal itself after a vaginal birth, some hormonal ups and downs can take place.
Around 3-5% of pregnant women experience heavy bleeding right after delivery. This condition can also come with some other issues like nausea, low blood pressure, and dizziness. If this happens, know that it is normal, but contact your medical professional if it becomes problematic.
Why Does it Happen?
As your body is experiencing physical, hormonal, and behavioral changes, it can lead to irregular periods and a distorted menstrual cycle. Here are some possible reasons behind it.
Poor Diet and Exercise Routine
A healthy pregnancy and postpartum healing depend heavily on the mother’s nutrition. Whether she is breastfeeding or not, a proper diet and exercise routine is necessary to maintain a balanced level of hormones.
Immense Weight Loss
Stress, tension, heavy bleeding during childbirth, and lack of sleep due to a newborn baby can lead to severe weight loss. Such conditions can cause hormonal disturbances and lead to delayed periods.
No Period After Giving Birth Can I Get Pregnant?
Being a mom is an amazing gift, but getting pregnant while caring for an infant may not be your preference. In that case, not having periods for a few weeks might be a blessing as it acts as natural birth control for some time.
However, a lack of a period is not a permanent hack to avoid pregnancy after delivery. Without proper birth control, you can get pregnant six weeks postpartum. Some women are even unaware of their back-to-back pregnancies and develop serious complications.
If you do not wish to get pregnant shortly after giving birth, talk to your healthcare professional about a contraceptive plan that will work for you. If you do wish to get pregnant shortly after giving birth and you are not having regular periods, then seek medical assistance to make sure your hormone levels are normal and ovulation is occurring. Just know you may have to be extra careful and more cautious with pregnancy soon after childbirth.
How Long Does it Take to Get a Period After Having a Baby
Every woman’s body is different, so there is no way to know exactly when your period will return. Enjoy your time with your new baby, and keep in regular communication with your healthcare professional. Let him or her know your concerns so they can help you navigate your unique situation.
Worrying can cause even more delays in your period, so try to stay calm and relaxed knowing that your first postpartum period may take six to eight weeks. Some women may experience heavy menstrual flow during the first few menstrual cycles before getting back to normal. But, if your period causes extreme pain and discomfort, don’t hesitate to contact your healthcare specialist.