After childbirth, your body will need time to heal before it is able to return to its pre-pregnant state. This period, also known as the postpartum period, is defined as the 6 weeks after giving birth during which time you will go through many changes, both physically and mentally.

While you are learning to cope with the changes associated with becoming a new mother, it is equally important to take good care of yourself, especially during those first few weeks.

That being said, here are 3 tips for mothers on how to stay healthy after giving birth:

Get the rest you need

According to the National Sleep Foundation, 76% of parents experience problems related to sleep on a frequent basis. When you have a baby, this comes as no surprise.

In addition to leaving your body exhausted, lack of sleep affects how you think and cope. It can cause memory lapses and make daily functioning more difficult, thereby leaving you feeling scattered and confused.

Although it is not easy to maintain a proper sleep schedule when you have to be at your little one’s beck and call, there are strategies you can practice to get the rest you need.

Dim the lights around the house;
Forgo screen time late at night;
Avoid heavy meals before bedtime;
Drink a cup of calming tea, like chamomile, before going to bed;
Cut down on caffeine and sugar intake;
Establish a sleep ritual;

And of course, the oldest advice in the book - sleep when your children sleep. Once you have put your baby to bed, make napping your number one priority. Remember, a well-rested mama is a happy mama.

Ease into exercise

After your baby is born, exercising can help to improve your physical and mental well-being. It can boost your mood, restore your muscle strength, decrease your risk of deep vein thrombosis, and even potentially ward off postpartum depression.

However, how soon you can start exercising after having given birth generally depends on how active you were throughout your pregnancy and what type of labour you underwent. For instance, a mother who is recovering from a c-section will feel different from a mother who has had a vaginal birth.

For this reason, it is important to guide yourself according to how you feel and how much energy you have. Going for walks is a great way to ease into exercising. As your strength returns, you can expand your exercise regime.

Overcome emotional challenges with simple lifestyle choices

Becoming a mother is a rewarding experience but it too comes with its challenges, including sleep deprivation, hormonal imbalances, and in some cases, postpartum depression.

According to the American Psychological Association, 1 out of 7 new mothers are affected by postpartum depression (PPD). This complex mix of physical, emotional, and behavioural changes rarely disappears on its own; however, it is treatable.

One of the most effective approaches to overcoming emotional challenges such as PPD is to make simple lifestyle choices that can help to improve your health and mood. These include: napping, eating nutritious foods, pampering yourself, slowly reintroducing exercise, building a support network, and seeking professional help (if necessary).

Every woman’s postpartum recovery time is different. With the aforementioned tips in mind, the most important thing that you can do for yourself is to take it easy and support your body’s recovery with plenty of rest, moderate exercise, good nutrition, and help. Doing so will give you the energy you need to stay healthy and feel your best while taking care of your little one.

Author's Bio: 

Christina is a proud wife, mother, entrepreneur, author and world traveller. Previously a successful businesswoman who gave it all up to raise children, Christina spent a lot of her free time during those years flipping through books and learning about a plethora of topics. She hopes her books will inspire and motivate others to do what makes them happy and to achieve their goals.