by Dr. Olivia Chubey, ND
The biggest mistake most first time parents make…is that they focus too much on birth preparation and don’t put enough emphasis into what comes after. The 4th trimester can blindside you just as much as an unexpected birth outcome. Put both together, and it can be a serious recipe for overwhelm!
The 4th trimester can blindside you just as much as an unexpected birth outcome.
Now don’t get me wrong, the postpartum period (where you are getting to meet your baby after waiting for so long) IS wonderful and filled with love. It is ALSO commonly filled with anxiety, fatigue, hot flashes, discomfort, mood swings and potentially pain.
This is why at Your Downtown Doula, our birth doulas are still oncall for you 2 weeks postpartum. We will be there for you when your life goes through this big change.
It’s also why we offer visits and classes that aim to educate you before the baby comes, because yes, postpartum brain fog is worse than pregnant brain fog. This way, we can teach you what to expect, what’s normal and what isn’t, and when to reach out to other professionals. This helps you feel confident and prepared for the postpartum period. So you can be resilient through the challenges that come your way, and not crumble under them.
Here is who Your Downtown Doula recommends you work with in the 4th trimester:
(click the links in the headings to be connected with corresponding providers)
You need to feed your baby. This is an expert on how to do so. Yes – even if you plan on formula feeding!! They will also let you know if you need any tongue tie support.
ASAP after birth. Ideally, you have a prenatal breastfeeding education class as well.
To avoid urinary leaking, pain with sex, to return back to exercise are just some of the reasons. Your pelvic floor did a lot of work during labour and birth, it’s important for you to rehabilitate it appropriately. It’s also still important to see this physiotherapist specialist if you had a c-section.
4-6 weeks after birth
*All of our doulas are naturopathic doctors*
There are a lot of body changes in the postpartum period that you may need additional support for, specifically blood work and follow up care with respect to thyroid, gestational diabetes, anemia, and addressing changes in vaginal or gut flora after antibiotics use in birth. Can also be complimentary support in pediatric and family wellbeing settings- think sleep, food introductions, immune support
Ideally ongoing care starting prenatally, and checkups done routinely postpartum
There are a lot of myths out there regarding baby’s sleep, it’s also an area of common frustration for most parents.
Ideally take a class prenatally so you are prepared for what the first few months will bring. Physiologically, you can not start sleep training until the baby is about 4-6 months.
You may not have family or friends that are close to you, or are able to help. You may also need some assistance overnight if you are solo parenting, or your partner has to sleep full nights due to work obligations. Please note while searching for postpartum doulas there is a difference between night time and day time support, and not all postpartum doulas offer both services.
Any time postpartum. Can be immediate or anytime things just feel too overwhelming
Your brain as parents change! With these neurological changes plus the very real life changes you undergo becoming parents you may need some extra emotional support. Studies also show that the transition to parenthood has a significant impact on your relationship! It is important to learn techniques to communicate with your partner and hold self compassion in these growth heavy times. It is also nice to know you are not alone – parent group therapy is also a great resource.
Can be initiated whenever you feel the need to.
Includes massage, cranial sacral therapy, osteopath, chiropractic care, acupuncture, etc
Nursing can take a toll on your body physically, on top of your labour recovery. Holding your baby often may also add to pre-existing low back pain. These professionals can help ease your discomfort.
Initiate with any neck/back/chest/shoulder pain that exacerbates with nursing. Or any low back pain.