How Long After Giving Birth Are You Fertile (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 3 weeks  

You cannot give birth to a baby just after you have delivered one is a myth that has been carried over for ages. Unless you want to have another child, it is important to use contraception even if you are having sex just after a few days of childbirth. Fertility after pregnancy is just as same as the normal fertility window. You are fertile two weeks before you get your periods. Although a woman’s fertility window does not undergo any changes post-pregnancy, doctors advise women to wait until their body heals completely.  

How Long After Giving Birth Are You Fertile? 

Fertility after pregnancy works differently for mothers that are breastfeeding and for mothers that are not. It is possible for women to get pregnant even before the first period after pregnancy as in just as any woman’s fertility cycle. You can get pregnant, at the earliest of 4 weeks after pregnancy or even 24 weeks after pregnancy. Some women will not regain their fertility immediately after a month of pregnancy. It is better to check for the symptoms of ovulation with the help of an ovulation test kit.  

Reasons How Long After Pregnancy Are You Fertile 
If you are a nonlactating mother You are fertile after a period of 4 weeks  
If you are a breast-feeding mother You are fertile after a period of 6 weeks (about 1 and a half months) 

The frequency and duration of breastfeeding, delay the ovulation period a little longer for those women who breastfeed their kids. Ovulation can take up to 50 to 74 days to return for breastfeeding mothers. Up to 12 to 78% chance for women to get pregnant before they get their first period after pregnancy. Although it is possible for them to get pregnant, it is very unhealthy. Mothers should have at least a year’s gap before they can deliver another baby. Time should be given to them, to let them recover from their pregnancy because their body gets fragile.  

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Why Does It Take So Long to Be Fertile After Giving Birth? 

 Breast-feeding mothers, for a period of five months after delivery, needn’t fear much about getting pregnant again. Sometimes, breastfeeding is seen as a method of contraception for up to a month and a half after delivery, although there is no research to prove its validity. Breastfeeding results in the delay of ovulation, meaning women are not fertile and cannot get conceived. It changes how ovulation works in the body. The chances of ovulation are less but it is possible. It is very difficult to look out for ovulation symptoms during breastfeeding as it is noticeably light, so it is for the best that you use other forms of contraception. During the first three weeks of breastfeeding, you shouldn’t take any contraception that might contain the hormone estrogen and this is the reason doctors advise you to avoid sex.  

Irrespective of whether you had a natural delivery or a cesarean, you are capable of getting pregnant almost immediately but you shouldn’t. Doctors suggest that you shouldn’t even have sex until the sixth-week (a month and two weeks) checkup after delivery. Getting pregnant soon enough after delivery is risky for both the mother and the child. The child might end up being a premature baby or have growth complications. The World Health Organization advises couples to give a break of 18 to 24 months between pregnancies for both the mother and the kids’ health’s sake. It is important to give the wound in the mother’s uterus, some time to heal. You are fertile just the same, but do not go for pregnancy immediately after childbirth.  

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Conclusion 

Mothers go through a lot of change, both mentally and physically after childbirth. Doctors advise husbands to give them time to get emotionally ready for intercourse or another delivery. We should try to be as understanding and supportive as possible. If you want another kid soon, is better to wait until the wound has healed and the bleeding has stopped. If not, it is going to be very risky for the mother. Your body has to have enough nutrition to bear another kid and therefore you should give your body adequate time to develop it.  

References 

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6282920/
  2. https://breastfeedingusa.org/content/article/understanding-your-fertility-while-breastfeeding
  3. https://expectingscience.com/category/fertility/
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