5 Weird Things That Happen to Your Body After Giving Birth (& When They'll Go Back to Normal)

nicole fabian-weberI had my daughter a little over three months ago and guess what? I still don't feel totally like myself! I mean, I definitely feel much more "normal" than I did a few months back, but dude, stuff's still going on. Weird stuff. Stuff all those people who were telling me, Think you're tired now? Wait 'til the baby gets here! forgot to fill me in on.

So let's discuss, ladies, shall we? Let's discuss what the hell is going on with our postnatal bodies/emotions/etc., and when we can expect to feel like ourselves again.

Hair loss. This was something I really wasn't looking forward to when I was pregnant. During the nine months of my gestation -- and probably yours, too -- my normally thin, fine hair was, in a word, awesome. It was thick. It was full. It was manageable as hell. Now? Not so much. I thought I was in the clear, but just a few weeks ago, my hair started falling out in unsettlingly large chunks in the shower, and it sucks. Is there anything I can do about it? Not really! Some say massage your scalp, take biotin -- I've been doing both, and nothing's seemed to change. But I guess we can (sort of) take solace in the fact that the hair loss period typically lasts from three to six weeks. I might be bald if it lasts any longer.

Baby bulge. Ah, everybody's favorite. I was lucky enough to lose most of the baby weight pretty quickly (hear me out), but right now? I'd kind of rather die than wear a bathing suit -- and I definitely still have a few pounds to go. According to Melinda Johnson, MS, RD, registered dietitian and spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association (ADA), baby weight loss should happen slowly. She said, "The number one thing new mothers have to have is a certain amount of patience with their body. It took nine months to get there. It should take at least that long to get back to their fighting weight."

Mood swings. This is an interesting one to me, because, lately, I've been feeling, I don't know, weird every now and again. And by weird, I mean I don't sleep. And no, it's not because of my baby. I'm just super hot all the time at night and I always wind up waking up at some point. It's the worst -- especially since my daughter (and husband) are sound asleep themselves. (My theory is that that time of the month is upon me.) That said, though, I was fortunate enough to never have felt really weird (I.E. depressed) after giving birth, as I was nervous I would and as some of my good friends have. According to the American Pregnancy Association, it's normal to have the "Baby Blues" for up to 14 days after you give birth. Any longer than that, you should contact a professional. 

When will I get my period? Never! Just kidding, but wouldn't that be fantastic? It varies from woman to woman, and whether or not you're breastfeeding will make a difference. But for someone who isn't breastfeeding, your period could return within 4 to 10 weeks. For those who are nursing, it really varies from person to person.

When will I want to have sex again? Never! Just kidding, but this, too, obviously varies greatly from person-to-person. The general rule of thumb is, though, no sex for six weeks after giving birth. That may be a really bad (or really good?) thing for you.

How did you feel about your postnatal body? What weird things happened to you?

Image via Nicole Fabian-Weber

postpartum recovery, postpartum weight


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nonmember avatar Melissa

If you're 3 months postpartum and having difficulty sleeping, having night sweats and just feel too hot at night, you should really consider having your thyroid checked. These are hallmark symptoms of postpartum thyroiditis, along with irritability. I had it and it developed around 3 - 4 months postpartum - at first I thought it was just normal symptoms associated with post-pregnancy and breastfeeding. There's not much that can be done when the thyroiditis is in the overactive phase, but they will monitor you to make sure it doesn't swing the other way into underactive.

Amanda Scott

It took me 18 months to lose the weight after my first child. I still couldn't fit into my old clothes as my once wide hips had gotten even wider. As soon as I was starting to feel comfortable in my own skin again, I got pregnant. I'm now four months post partum and I have only lost 20 of the 50 lbs I gained. I've been exercising and counting calories but the scale just isn't budging. I'm still wearing maternity clothes. I know that it took me a long time to lose the weight the first time, but I was still hoping it would be different this time.

Every time I feel bad about my body, I try to remind myself that I look this way because I was lucky enough to carry and birth my children. I just have to remember to be thankful for what I have, and two wonderful children ARE worth the strange body warping that I've endured.

MomLi... MomLily67

Your body will never be the same as pre-baby, but you should not stop taking care of it. Excercise, eat healthy and accept the fact that you had a baby and that changes a body. You can still have a rocking body, just a bit different than before.  Some lucky ladies are able to get their "pre-baby body" back, but ask them, and many work their butts of to achieve it.

Don't sweat it!

nonmember avatar Candace

I was 98 pounds before I became pregnant with my first baby, now nine months after having my second baby I'm 140 pounds. The only thing I'm a little self conscious of is the baby bulge, but WHO CARES! Do you guys realize how many women out there would love to have these problems jst to be able to conceive? My two babies are my world, and no matter what other people say about my body they will love me for who I am and not what I look like. My first born is now 2, and he likes to use my bulge as a drum and it makes laugh. Our bodies will never be normal again, but our kid(s) should be worth every bit of it.

wjbra... wjbrady2011

i was blessed with nice thick hair so i didnt have the issue with it thinning. i did have basically a flap instead of a stomach for about 2 months. not a bump. literaly a flap of fat and skin. it was disgusting. my stretch marks were dark purple. now you cant even see them. for me my body is slowly still returning to normal. my son is a year. now its just a matter of exercise and healthy habits. i still havent had a period. i am breastfeeding still though. the biggest thing that i dislike is i had a great butt before i got prego. i had a badonk a donk. now it is small. i lost my butt completely. i started getting into running alot after  so im sure that is a part of it. but i am very unhappy about it. and my once small b cups now shrink and expand between d and dd because of the nursing. i hate it. it is uncumfortable. my back hurts. and theres a lot of cute clothes i cant wear with large breasts because it looks trashy or it just doesnt fit my chest.

Cassie Woods-Krom

My period came back a little over a month and half after i had my son, i never loss any hair, and my weight went down partially quick...i mean it's still loose right now, but if i loose 3 more lbs ill be smaller than what i was when i got pregnant.my thighs and hips have ALWAYS been big in the first place so im used to that. as for the sex, i was back and ready to go the first night i was home from the hospital....i guess it does really just depend on the person....good luck to all of you new moms out there!

Renee Krukovsky

After having son number 3 just about 2 weeks ago, I woke up at 2AM to make his bottle. My hands were on fire. So, I sucked it up and gave him his bottle, anyway. Once he was done I put him back to sleep and went down stairs to check on my hands. I was completely covered in s potty rash, everywhere. My hands and feet were swollen too. This rash quickly spread and got worse before it got better...so painful!!!!!!! It's called PUPPS......supposedly a reaction to the build up of testosterone....

KJaco... KJacobson0414

My mind. Yup, its been 6 years since delivering my twin girls and 2 years since delivering my singleton girl. I can honestly say, I'm so flighty. My mind and memory has never came back!

Waag Waag

I was back in normal clothes the day after I had my first son never really lost any hair 2 weeks after he was born my period started back up and I had sex within the first week as soon as I gave birth you couldn't tell I had ever been pregnant the only thing I had a problem with was feeling over whelmed the first week with a new baby and my husband being on r and r from afganistan he was home 4 days before my son was born and went back 10 days after. Hopefully it will be just as easy this time around.

nonmember avatar Erin

I would have to say it takes round about a year to a year and a half to feel almost normal and my body will never be the same, but it is so worth every bit of it. I love both of my daughters more than life itself.

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