After spending nearly the last year of your life pregnant, you’re probably missing many of the ways that your body was before the pregnancy.  Your back is likely sore, you aren’t sleeping well, and your ankles might be swollen.  Unfortunately, these problems won’t disappear magically as soon as you give birth.  It can take as much as a year for your body to get back to the way it was before you got pregnant.

There are certain things that may never be the same again.  Since your body goes through so many changes during the process, it’s no wonder why your body may permanently change in several ways.  Here are some of the most common ways that women find their bodies transform.

Changes to Your Vagina

Your vagina will be swollen and likely bruised if you delivered naturally.  You may even have a few stitches from any tearing that occurred. The swelling should go away within a week.

However, you may find that your vagina is more stretched permanently.  Your pelvic floor goes through a considerable amount of work during birth.   In some cases, women may develop incontinence.  Your doctor will be able to explain what kind of treatments is available, which may solve the issue.

Stretched Stomach

Your stomach will shrink significantly after you give birth so it may leave you with extra skin.  Since your stomach had to accommodate an entire human, you may have even developed stretch marks.

Be patient with the size of your stomach, however. It may shrink back to its original size originally; however it can take up to several years in some cases.

Thin Hair

Your hair becomes thick and full of volume when you’re pregnant thanks to hormones.  After you give birth, the sudden drop in hormones may lead to thin hair that falls out at a rapid rate.

Don’t fret, however.  This won’t last forever.  Eventually, your hair will stop thinning, and it will return to normal.

Higher Weight

Although some women return to their pre-pregnancy weight fairly quickly, some women never do.  It’s a matter of your body’s individual chemistry, and how much attention you put into your diet.

By combining a sensible diet with regular exercise, you should get rid of your pregnancy weight.

Wider Hips

Since your body has to stretch to accommodate pushing the baby out, your hips may widen by several centimeters.  This doesn’t happen to every woman; however, if you find that your hips look a little wider than they did before even after losing the baby weight, then your bones may have shifted.

Rather than feeling discouraged by the changes in your body, embrace them, and be grateful for the miracle that your body created.

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