Perineum after childbirth: risks, solutions and explanations


Giving birth is an equally wonderful and traumatic stage in a woman’s life! For the body, for the head, for the adventure that follows…

Physically, with the baby’s weight in the pelvis, the pelvic floor muscles are very stressed and tend to relax during pregnancy and childbirth causing some troubles that we feel especially after giving birth.

However, do not panic, there are many solutions to re-muscle your postpartum perineum. With a few exercises and good habits, you will regain tone and intimate comfort.

State of play, the perineum after childbirth

After childbirth, all our attention is focused on our child, and that’s normal. However, one must not do not forget to take care of yourself and more particularly of your perineum.

To grow and develop properly, the child needed space and it was your abdominal muscles that became distended, the ligaments that relaxed, and the entire perineal sphere that made room.

Only, this abdominal stretching had the consequence of greatly reducing their power and their support capacity. Without the power of the abdominals, it is the pelvic floor, which is responsible for supporting the weight of the baby for many months.

This effort is not without consequence since it weakens it and makes it less toned. It then becomes necessary to regain this tone, without which many inconveniences can occur such as:

  • urinary leakage
  • anal incontinence
  • vaginal gas
  • prolapse (this term refers to organ descent)
  • sometimes a slightly weaker feeling in the vagina during penetration during sex.

To avoid them, the perineum must once again be able to play its role of maintenance. You will understand, there is no secret, postpartum muscle rehabilitation is necessary and essential.

Warning ! Bleeding following childbirth is completely normal: these are lochia.

They are part of the healing process of the uterus and can be heavier than menstruation. They will decrease in quantity over time.

Support for the perineum after giving birth

Rest assured, after childbirth you will be accompanied as much as before. It is also very likely that postpartum rehabilitation will be prescribed for you when you leave the maternity ward.

It is usually done by a professional such as a physiotherapist or a midwife.

  • This follow-up is also fully reimbursed by health insurance.

When to start reeducating the perineum?

Before starting rehabilitation after childbirth, the vaginal tissues must be given time to heal. This step takes more or less time depending on the woman.

This is why generally, postpartum rehabilitation is only done 6 to 8 weeks after delivery. You can still adopt some good habits that will relieve you:

  • Avoid excessive abdominal pressure : it is necessary at all costs to avoid excessive efforts and excessively heavy loads. If you want to resume sport after childbirth, favor gentle movements that do not exert great pressure on your body.
  • Monitor your posture : depending on your posture, pressure may be exerted on the muscle. To avoid this, always try to keep your back straight.
  • Take care of your private parts : change sanitary napkins regularly, wash after bowel movement, all actions that promote healing and prevent possible infection.

Warning ! Even if you don’t notice any of the symptoms mentioned at the beginning of the article, rehabilitation should not be neglected.

Sometimes the inconveniences caused by childbirth do not occur until several months or even several years later.

Of course, you can also prevent this distention of the perineal muscle by working it during pregnancy (and even before)!! A sports program for pregnant women is a good solution to stay in shape and get used to feeling the perineum.

perineal rehabilitation info

Regarding the session, several choices are available to you:

  • The practitioner’s choice : it can be practiced by a physiotherapist or a midwife.
  • The choice of place : it can be done at home, in the office or even at the hospital.
  • The choice of method : there are three main ones, including manual rehabilitation, by electrostimulation or by muscle feedback.

All of this should be discussed with a healthcare professional who can adapt your rehabilitation to your specific needs. During your first consultation, the practitioner will ask you a few questions and test your muscle tone through vaginal examination. This will allow him to draw up an assessment and guide you on the most suitable method to strengthen you.

Whatever the method, with rigor, it is certain that you will feel the results. Take your time, forget about losing weight after pregnancy and you will then regain full awareness of your body, but above all its control.

But we must not forget that it is a slow process. Above all, don’t be discouraged!

Cesarean delivery, rehabilitation or not?

Even today, a large number of women tend to think that with a cesarean delivery, it is not necessary to remuscle her perineum.

However, the time when a woman’s perineum is most stressed is during the entire period of pregnancy, and not during birth. Thereby, in the same way as vaginal deliveries, cesarean deliveries require you to re-tame your muscles.

Whatever happens, a verification of its tone is systematically carried out during your follow-up, during the visit of the 6 weeks. At this time, your doctor will likely prescribe a few muscle rehabilitation sessions.

It is preferable to wait for the visit of the 6 weeks as well as the beginning of the sessions before starting the exercises alone.

Once this step is completed, you can perfectly complete your routine with a few simple and quick exercises which will reinforce the work begun. In this part, I explain how to strengthen your perineum and fully reclaim this organ.

Example of an exercise for the perineum after childbirth

One of the best-known exercises to rehabilitate your pelvic floor is the false thoracic inspiration. This exercise is a hypopressive abs movement that should be practiced several times a day (2 to 3 times) to improve the quality of your rehabilitation sessions.

A few simple steps for maximum results:

  1. Lie on the floor with your back flat
  2. Exhale long, but gently, contracting your perineum (as if you want to hold in gas, a strong urge to pee or have a bowel movement)
  3. Inhale without air in order to raise the chest and hollow the belly
  4. Contract the muscle one last time
  5. Release by inhaling gently
  6. Repeat the operation 3 to 5 times in a row

To know ! This exercise is not a traumatic job for the body still weakened by the birth of the child, so you can do it before starting rehabilitation to make it more effective.

Many other exercises can be practiced to feel and contract your perineum. To guide you, my program to strengthen your perineum is available !

Muscle perineum

Inside, you will find many professional advice, but also some practices on contraction and the feeling of the latter as well as a complete sports routine, adapted to each of your specificities. A compendium of tips to be able to pamper your perineum!

Feel the contraction of the perineum

Feeling the contraction of your perineum is not always something simple, even without having given birth. To help you solicit the pelvic muscles, several solutions exist:

  • Strength and breathing exercises : they will help you to be aware of your perineal muscles and to (re)appropriate them.
  • Stimulation accessories : they can be connected or more rudimentary, but they will be used to feel your muscle and therefore to contract it. It can be a good investment, especially if you have trouble using your muscles. These little accessories will make your sessions as fun as they are effective.

Working on your perineum even if you’ve never been pregnant

We don’t always realize it, but it’s a part of the body that is heavily used on a daily basis, whether you are pregnant or not. Whether during a sports activity or simple reactions of our body, such as coughing or sneezing, it allows us to absorb the pressure exerted on our abdominals and to support some of our organs.

Over time and the multiple contractions it undergoes, it may become tired and therefore relax.

the main risk to this relaxation is the appearance of incontinence (urinary or anal). So don’t underestimate the importance of working on it, even if you’ve never been pregnant. Doing this work every day will not only help you avoid incontinence, but alsoimprove your lower abdomen support and have more fulfilling sex.

Some questions that I was able to collect:


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