By Chrissie Gallagher-Mundy
Book Review By:Terri O'Neale
This book has become a bible in my doula practice specialising in cesarean births. At less than 130 pages, this relatively short and well illustrated tome is brilliant at offering advice and hope to mums who have a cesarean birth. First published in 2004 and updated in 2006, this book can be easily found on Amazon or eBay if your local bookstore does not carry it.
As the name implies, the primary focus of the book is upon speeding the healing process following a surgical birth. It is organised chronologically beginning with a background on the actual procedure and what to expect in the first 24 hours including excellent advice on breastfeeding positions that are most comfortable after a caesarean.
The second section looks at the first week after surgery including going home and psychological adjustments. Section 3 examines in more detail what is considered the traditional postpartum recovery period, weeks 2 to 12 including caring for your incision. Because a cesarean is major abdominal surgery the recovery period is significantly longer though, so Section 4 examines weeks 13 to 24 with a specific focus upon exercises to help your body recover fully.The final section is entitled "Return to Normal." It looks at your pelvic floor, posture and repeat caesareans.
The thing which I love most about this book is that it allows women to pro-actively meet the challenges of their recovery. For many women the most traumatic part of cesarean births is a loss of control. This book offers them a road map for regaining a sense of control on their recovery. It contains simple exercises, some of which can be started immediately after the birth and progressively work towards complete recovery and as it says...return to normal.
Cesarean Recovery is one of the easiest and clearest reads of any in my pregnancy library. It features spectacular illustrations which clearly demonstrate the exercises and positions. She also makes good use of text boxes to highlight and focus upon important information. The book also contains inspirational stories from real-life women who have had one or more cesarean births.
I wish I had known about this book when I had my caesarean births. It is a must read for all my clients. If you are having a cesarean birth or know someone, who is, get this book!
Who Wrote This Book Review?
Terri is the mother of six; 3 cesareans, 2 VBACs and an adoption. She has over fifteen years breastfeeding experience as well as peer supporter training with two organisations. Terri has completed the Childbirth Educator, Birth & Post-partum Doula certificates with Childbirth International. In addition, she also holds a BS in health education from Texas A&M University.
To sign-up for her monthly e-newsletter featuring her latest articles on pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding and parenting; visit her website: Special start Birth.
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