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Signs of Infection After Birth: Health and Safety During Recovery

Signs of Infection After Birth: Health and Safety During Recovery

Postpartum infections tend to happen after both vaginal and cesarean methods of childbirth, sometimes even during breastfeeding. This, along with the trauma a woman’s body goes through during delivery, can contribute to postpartum infections. What are the signs of infection after birth?

Six weeks after delivery is when the bleeding will generally occur. However, this is also when infections happen. These increase the fear of childbirth among women as well as add anxiety to new mothers. To shed more light on how to spot infections early, here, you can learn more about the signs of infection after birth, as well as when to seek help.

The Difference Between Normal and Abnormal Bleeding

Bleeding is actually a very normal part when it comes to postpartum moments. It is because the uterus is slowly reconstructing the lining it shed and restoring it to how it was before having the baby. When bacteria messes with this and the uterus’ surrounding areas, that’s when infection may occur.

Infections are usually characterized by many things, but usually, it has three identifications.

  1. Endometritis, where the uterine lining is infected.
  2. Myometritis, where the uterine muscle is infected.
  3. Parametritis, where the infection occurs around the uterus.

Abnormal bleeding occurs when the bleeding includes blood clots that are bigger than an egg. It also gets significantly heavier, as well as develops an immediately noticeable foul order. It may not be identifiable at first, but an infection will make itself known immediately.

What are the Signs of Infection After Birth?

It might take more than a few days for the infection to develop. Sometimes it may be when you’re already at home. It is crucial to ask your partner to help you keep track of things like your physical well-being and the like. To know more, here are the signs and symptoms:

  • High-temperature fever
  • Lower abdomen or pelvic pain
  • Vaginal discharge with a foul scent
  • White or pale skin
  • Increase in heart rate

Although these may seem unnoticeable at first, you should always make sure to check on yourself as much as you do the baby. If you suspect that you have an infection, contact your doctor immediately as it can have profound complications.

When to Ask For Help

If you’ve been experiencing any of the aforementioned signs and symptoms, it’s time to get help. Untreated infections could ultimately lead to worsening conditions. One of the main causes of postpartum mortality is an infected uterus, which makes it one of the most dangerous conditions to have after birth.

Doctors will prescribe medicine or perform surgery to address the cause of bleeding and where the infection started.

Infections can be avoided

Fortunately, infections can be avoided. Postpartum patients are evaluated before discharge and is also instructed what to watch out for. Some patient will do other diagnostic test before discharge if they have a higher risk for infection.

Infections are always caused by the use of unsanitary objects or unhygienic practices. You should also focus on recovery and not do anything that might put you in danger after delivering a child.

The signs of an infection after birth are easily noticeable. As long as early intervention is done, infections can be properly treated with success.

Learn more about Postpartum Complications here.

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Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Postpartum infections: A review for the non-OBGYN, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4934978/ Accessed March 15, 2021

Puerperal infections of the genital tract: a clinical review, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24406036/ Accessed March 15, 2021

Postpartum infections, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK560804/ Accessed March 15, 2021

Prevalence of postpartum infections: a populationbased observational study, https://obgyn.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/aogs.12455 Accessed March 15, 2021

Labor and delivery, postpartum care, https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/labor-and-delivery/in-depth/postpartum-care/art-20047233 Accessed March 15, 2021

Epidemiology of and Surveillance for Postpartum Infections, https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/7/5/01-0511_article Accessed March 15, 2021

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Written by Kirsten Rocamora Updated 2 weeks ago
Medically reviewed by Jobelle Ann Dela Cruz Bigalbal, M.D.