After your cesarean, recovery time in the hospital generally lasts 2 to 4 days. Once home, your full recovery may take 4 to 6 weeks, and should include resting as much as possible. Make sure that you have discussed all aspects of your recovery with your doctor before you leave the hospital, including instructions about medications, your activity level, and symptoms to watch for.
Recovering From a Cesarean: Moving to the Recovery RoomAfter your cesarean section, you will either be moved to a recovery room or directly to a hospital bed in the labor and delivery area, where you will be closely monitored. You will stay there until your healthcare providers feel that you are recovering well -- usually in 1 to 2 hours. Then you will be taken to your regular hospital room.
After the cesarean section, you may shiver or feel sick to your stomach. This may be caused by the anesthesia. If you feel this way, tell a healthcare provider, and he or she can help make you comfortable.
If you were awake for the cesarean section, you may have some time to get to know your baby, and even begin breastfeeding, while you are in the recovery room.
Remember that your healthcare team wants your recovery to occur without any problems, so be sure to tell them if anything that feels abnormal or "not right."
Recovery While in the HospitalAfter your stay in the recovery room, you will be brought to a regular hospital room. Your family and friends will be able to visit with you there at the scheduled times. You will also spend a lot of time with your new baby.
You will probably be in the hospital for 2 to 4 days after your cesarean section. Some women need to stay longer. The time you spend in the hospital depends on how well your surgery went and how well you are healing. Most women feel very tired after a cesarean section, so you will want to rest as much as possible. Your healthcare provider will talk to you and your family regularly about your progress.
The catheter in your bladder is usually taken out the day after your cesarean section. Also on this day, if your doctor thinks you are ready, you will start to drink clear fluids, like water and apple juice. You may not be able to have regular food until you "pass gas." When this happens, it shows that your bowels are working right.
Any staples that were used to close incisions will most likely be removed before you leave the hospital. Sometimes, they are removed after you leave the hospital, during a later visit with your doctor.