10 Alarming Postnatal Symptoms That Need Medical Attention

4 min read

Written by Pradeep


Going through labor and giving birth to a baby is a humongous task, though deeply satisfying. The journey of those nine months and then undergoing labor is like a topsy-turvy roller coaster ride. You will keep on bouncing and jumping even when you have successfully completed your ride. After childbirth you and your body undergo many emotional and physical changes. Some bleeding, discomfort, pains and aches, fatigue and tiredness often seem normal and one can cope with these symptoms with some self-help. But there are a few postnatal symptoms which need your proper attention and may require medical help. It is a good idea to keep all your medical files at one place and let everyone in the home know about it. This way, if an emergency strikes, seeking medical help would be easy and your family members would not be rummaging through the house.
postnatal depression

10 Postnatal Problems That Need Immediate Attention

Below are few of those postnatal warning signs which your body may give you before triggering a bigger health problem –

  • Excessive bleeding with clots: After giving birth it’s quite common to experience some heavy bleeding however it can also be an alarming symptom if in case you have to change your pad within every one or two hours. The problem must especially if the bleeding is accompanied by too many fresh blood clots. If this is the case you should immediately contact your doctor as it this can be a condition of hemorrhage which can lead to shock. Click here to read more about lochia after delivery.
  • High or low blood pressure: During your pregnancy if you were a case of pre-eclampsia or while going through labor you have lost an extensive amount of blood then it’s quite essential to keep an eye upon your blood pressure levels even after many hours of your delivery. Ignoring any symptoms of high or low blood pressure can often lead to a ‘shock’ condition. You should consult your doctor immediately if along with elevated or low blood pressure you starts developing signs like dizziness, headache, nausea, or blurry vision
  • High fever: High fever along with shivering is often a warning sign of undergoing condition of infection. If in case you had a C-section or an episiotomy then there may be a wound that has not healed properly or is taking too much time to heal because of infection. Often infections are accompanied by smelly discharge and pain associated with area where infection is taking palace. Consult your doctor if in case you experience any of these symptoms. Click here to read about episiotomy and here to read on C-section infections.
  • Urine retention: After childbirth it’s very important to pass urine and stool within 24 hours of delivery. Passing urine within first 6 hours is much more important. If in case you are not able to pass urine within first 7-8 hours even after increasing your fluid intake then it must be a case of urine retention which needs urgent medical attention. If you are at hospital then your doctors themselves will keep a track of your first passing using but if in case you have delivered at home then try to consult a doctor as soon as possible
  • Chest pain: Chest pain after delivery can be because of muscles strain that your body have gone through during labor but sometimes it indicates bigger medical problems such a possible chest infection or pulmonary embolism. If in case you are experiencing breathlessness along with the chest pain then you must consult your doctor on immediate basis
  • Calf pain: Having a pain in your calf muscles along with swelling is a sign of deep vein thrombosis- a blood clot in the deep veins of the muscles, which is a grave medical condition. Few others symptoms associated with calf pain which can also give you a hint of underlying situation are, redness particularly at the back of your leg, tenderness or warmth in the area of clot. Consult your doctor on urgent basis if you are experiencing any of these symptoms
  • Constant headache: Having a constant and ruthless headache after your delivery can signify the ongoing condition of pre-eclampsia which in every case needs medical attention. Often, epidural and anesthesia administered during labor can also be a cause of continuous headache. You must consult your doctor if along with headache you are also having some episodes of vomiting and blurry vision

Postpartum depression

  • Constant perineal pain with swelling and stinky discharge: Perineal pain and stinky discharge might be due to infection in your stitches. If in case your condition is not improving within two –three days especially when you are taking antibiotics then it’s better to revisit your doctor again and have a proper perineal checkup, the swelling can also be a heamatoma which needs medical attention for its treatment
  • Tender belly: In case of cesarean – a tender belly can be a sign of infection associated with stitches or wound inside your womb from where the placenta has been detached. An unhealed wound can lead to heavy bleeding that can be a life threatening situation. Seek a medical check-up even if you develop an iota of a doubt
  • Behavioral disorder: It’s quite common to experience some baby blues after child birth however if in case you are having some hallucination along with distress and anxiety then it can be the starting of rare condition called postpartum psychosis. Suicidal tendencies, or morbid thoughts require medical intervention and should not be ignored. If not treated on time it can soon turn into a serious mental health problem

Be careful about your postpartum health and pay attention to the symptoms you are experiencing. Don’t ignore them and seek medical help in time so that severe illness can be avoided and you can get get better quickly.


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