We offer all new mothers a personalised check up 6-8 weeks after giving birth. Most of our mothers find it convenient to have this check to coincide with the 8 week baby check and first vaccinations, but an appointment can be arranged separately at your convenience- please speak to our reception.
The postnatal check covers both your physical and mental health. We will review any existing long-term health problems which may have been affected by your pregnancy as well as any which may have developed during the pregnancy and birth, such as gestational diabetes or high blood pressure.
The main elements of the check are listed below, together with links to further information and resources. The review is not limited to the topics below, and you are welcome to bring along to the appointment any questions or concerns you may have.
Many women find the transition to parenthood a challenge and mental health difficulties after giving birth are fairly common. Most of these difficulties are successfully cared for in the community. We encourage mothers to discuss any difficulties they may have. We understand that sometimes there is a pressure or expectation to be enjoying pregnancy and motherhood which may make women feel reluctant to disclose a problem.
There are also mental health resources on our website
Breastfeeding mothers should take a daily vitamin D supplement (containing 10mcg). The Health Visitor can provide tailored support to mothers with breastfeeding concerns. Please speak to the practice for advice about any medication you may be taking while breastfeeding.
Pregnancy and childbirth can cause short and long-term pelvic floor problems, which often worsen around the time of the menopause. Problems can include bladder or bowel incontinence, bladder or bowel emptying problems, sexual dysfunction, prolapse and pelvic pain. Although these problems are common, most can be addressed through treatment. It is important to keep physically active and strengthen the pelvic floor with exercises.
The Family Planning Association provide an 'at a glance' guide to contraception
Contraception will be discussed at your check, and we can provide most methods from the practice. If you are considering an implant or IUDIUS (hormone or non-hormone), these can be fitted at our local sexual health service. You can self-refer for this without having to see the GP.
We will address any long-term health problems or new problems which have developed during the pregnancy. We provide resources to support your health, such as weight loss support, smoking cessation support and making sure you are up to date with any NHS programmes such as cervical cancer screening and vaccinations.