Regaining Confidence and Intimacy After Childbirth

Regaining Confidence and Intimacy After Childbirth
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(BPT) - There’s no doubt that a woman’s life changes after having a baby, ushering a flood of emotions and deep love for her newborn. However, for some women, life after childbirth can also bring about difficult emotions, like increased insecurity around appearance and intimacy.

Although the majority of women positively adapt to the physical changes their body experiences during pregnancy, they often do not retain the same level of self-confidence after childbirth.[1] According to a recent study, more than 64 percent of new moms surveyed confessed their body image had worsened since becoming a mother.[2]

In addition to feeling self-conscious about weight gain and stretch marks, women also grapple with the functional changes that occur to their bodies after childbirth as the stretching that occurs to the vaginal wall and introitus (opening to the vagina) during childbirth often lasts well beyond delivery. According to a recent study, as many as 63 percent of women felt their vagina was looser since giving birth.[3] Loss of tone and sensation is also common for women who gave birth naturally, rather than by cesarean section.

Coupled with poor self-image, functional difficulties (such as dryness, itching and looseness) after birth can lead to women feeling self-conscious around their partners, making intimacy difficult. More than 8 in 10 women experience sexual problems in the first three months after their first delivery, and 62 percent of women surveyed attributed the negative changes in their sex life to post-partum vaginal looseness. [4],[5] And a year and a half after childbirth, 24 percent of women are still experiencing pain during sex.[6] We also know that a woman’s body image correlates positively with both her and her husband’s marital satisfaction.[7] So what can we do to solve the problem nobody wants to talk about?

Advances in technology, beyond the surgical interventions of the past, have made it possible to remedy some of the functional issues so many women face after giving birth, helping them rebuild self-esteem and regain intimacy with their partners, yet such solutions and interventions are not regularly discussed.

Thankfully, there are several ways to relieve discomfort and gain confidence after giving birth:

  • Address your discomfort: Vaginal looseness is a common side effect of childbirth. Clench and release exercises known as Kegels are a simple way to strengthen pelvic muscles, which may help with looseness. To address vaginal dryness, many women look to manufactured lubricants as a way to ease their discomfort.
  • Talk to your doctor: Consider a simple, non-surgical procedure to help restore intimacy after having a child. There are non-invasive treatment options that exist, such as CO2RE Intima by Syneron Candela, which can treat pain and dryness in three 15 minute sessions, three weeks apart. 94 percent of women reported that the treatment helped improve vaginal rejuvenation,[8] making intimacy easier and more approachable for women who may feel hesitant after having a child. Additionally, 81 percent of women who used CO2RE Intima reported a boost in sexual gratification.8 To find out more about CO2RE Intima and how it can help you regain control of your intimate wellness or find a doctor near you, visit CO2REIntima.com.
  • Spend time with your partner: Remember why you fell in love with your partner. Make time to get out of the house on a date night for dinner or a movie.

Although intimacy and self-confidence are important parts of women’s overall happiness, many women struggle to achieve them after birth, as functional problems can last well beyond delivery. As these symptoms are common, women should feel comfortable seeking remedies which can help them rebuild their self-esteem. After all, happy moms are the best moms.

[1] Clark et al. “My Baby Body: A Qualitative Insight into Women’s Body-Related Experiences and Mood During Pregnancy and the Postpartum.” http://www.jordemoderforeningen.dk/fileadmin/Fag___Forskning/Bachelor_2014_SYD/Den_soede_ventetid/Bilag_B_-_My_baby_body_-_A_qualitative_insight_into_women_s_body-related.pdf. Accessed November 21, 2016.

[2] Baby Center. “The New-Mom Body Survey: 7,000 Women Tell It Like It Is.” http://www.babycenter.com/0_the-new-mom-body-survey-7-000-women-tell-it-like-it-is_3653252.bc. Accessed November 21, 2016.

[3] “Vaginal Atrophy After Childbirth.” Toluna Quick Survey. 28 December 2015.

[4] Barrett et al. “Women’s Sexual Health After Childbirth.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10688502Accessed November 21, 2016.

[5] “Vaginal Atrophy After Childbirth.” Toluna Quick Survey. 28 December 2015.

[6] McDonald et al. “Dyspareunia and Childbirth: A Prospective Cohort Study.” http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/1471-0528.13263/abstractAccessed November 21, 2016.

[7] Meltzer et al. “Body Image and Marital Satisfaction: Evidence for the Mediating Role of Sexual Frequency and Sexual Satisfaction.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2864925/Accessed November 21, 2016.

[8] Final results from Clinical Study HM Monteprincipe Hospital, Madrid, Spain, 2016; Proprietary Syneron Consumer Survey, 2015.




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