Helpful Hints by Week

Helpful Hints for the First Week:


  • Get adequate rest; nap or rest whenever you can! If you are able, have help the first few days at home. Concentrate on caring for your baby and yourself. Let others do the housework, cooking, and laundry.
  • Avoid heavy lifting. Remember to lift nothing heavier than your newborn for four to six weeks.
  • Stairs are no problem for most women, but take them slowly. If you have had a Cesarean birth, take the stairs more cautiously and avoid using them too often.
  • Make sure you get plenty of time for quiet moments with your husband/partner and baby.
  • Consider hiring a postpartum doula or other outside help if you need assistance at home.

Helpful Hints for the Second Week:

  • Your strength will increase. Don’t be discouraged about tiring easily; it takes a while to get back to normal.
  • Again, continue to rest when you feel tired and pay attention to your body’s signs of fatigue. Do what you feel like doing. Postpone what is unnecessary.
  • Continue to avoid heavy lifting, stooping or squatting, particularly if you have had a Cesarean birth.
  • Do some light housekeeping and cooking that feels “right.” Remember, your main job now is to care for yourself and your baby.
Third and Fourth Weeks
  • Slowly increase your activity until the fourth to sixth week, when all but the most strenuous physical activity can be resumed.
  • Again, take time for rest and family.