Postnatal care is important to establish that all is well with mother and baby.
It is necessary to have:
- A postnatal examination to ensure that all is well.
- Perform a Pap smear test if this is due.
- A discussion about contraceptive options.
- A discussion of problems identified in the pregnancy.
Women can still have problems after the birth of their baby and this needs to be assessed and managed appropriately.
Not all pregnancies are entirely uncomplicated. Some can be complicated by problems including:
- Intra uterine growth problems
- Difficult or assisted vaginal deliveries
- Obstructed labour and caesarean birth delivery
- And a multitude of other conditions.
At a postnatal visit we would review such problems. We would arrange for specific tests that should be performed to further evaluate the likelihood for such problems to recur in subsequent pregnancies. By so doing we would reduce recurrence rates and improve outcomes in subsequent pregnancies.
Even normal pregnancies can have effects on a women’s health both mentally and physically. Some women may experience psychological effects such as stress, anxiety and ultimately post natal depression. Other post natal problems may include breast feeding issues and paediatric problems including gastro oesophageal reflux and colic. Some women may have problems with pelvic floor weakness including urinary incontinence.
All of these problems are important . All need to be discussed, assessed and managed appropriately. The post natal visit is an appropriate time to do this.