Numbers to have on speed dial in the early stages after birth. By Octavia Hamilton, Founder and Physio.

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Numbers you need on speed dial in those early days postpartum.

Welcome to the fourth trimester! I can tell you from personal experience that I could barely cope with anything other than looking after my baby and myself in those first 3 months after the birth of my first daughter. Reading instructions was so challenging, anything new felt completely unmanageable. Now imagine there is something you are really struggling with for either you and your baby and you are set with the task of finding the best person to help. A sleep deprived, overwhelmed, and worried person mind might find it all a bit much. Then there is the social anxiety about asking for help. There is a culture of wanting to show you are coping, you are capable.

I don’t know where this feeling not being able to reach out for help has come from. It is a deeply personal moment the bringing a child into the world and we used to do it surrounded by our elders, our sisters, and our folk. Now we often live miles from our family. Even friends have their own lives, and it can be hard to reach out. We don’t have the village we once had.

So, what we need to do is prepare. Build that network. Ask questions and be ready to accept help and support. Like you prepare for your birth it time to start thinking about your fourth trimester too time too. It’s better to be prepared and not need the numbers than be in need and struggling to find the best person to help you.

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XENA has done the hard work for you if you live in Hampshire.

We have a team of tried and tested pregnant, birth and postpartum practitioners. We aim over the next year or so to start a database of trusted professionals across England too so watch this place.

Check out our XENA Ambassador database too for more fabulous professionals to help you feel great.

So here we go… In alphabetical order:

Craniosacral therapy and chiropracting:

Craniosacral therapy can make all the difference to your baby if they have had a tricky birth, experiencing reflux, they are struggling to settle or suffering from tongue tie. Chiropractors can also help settle your pain following birth.

Emily mason

emily.mason@spinalanswer.co.uk

https://www.spinalanswer.co.uk

Alton

Confidence and calm for new mums

Gently guided conversations providing a safe space to explore topics like self-care, physical recovery, or whatever you most need on the day. No topic is off-limit. The sessions include restorative relaxations to recharge, easy tools to boost confidence and navigate more difficult moments, and simple ways to fill up your cup, so that you can fully enjoy those first weeks and months with your baby.

Valentine Gardener

https://www.positivebirthingparenting.com/con

Food doula:

Because who doesn’t want delicious and nutritious food made for them?

Kate Longden

https://www.thefooddoula.co.uk/

Lactation specialist and breastfeeding specialist:

You may want to breastfeed, but it doesn't come easily to all. Add in extreme fatigue, raging hormones and a screaming hungry baby and funnily enough it might not be that easy.

Cristina Amaro

Cristinaamaro@gmail.com

National

www.lcgb.org

Tongue tie:

Sadly, many babies are not routinely checked for tongue tie and if you are struggling with feeding then this could be the reason.

Kathryn Weymouth

Kathrynweymouth@yahoo.co.uk

Alton

Mental health team:

If you have prior concerns, you can speak to you midwife and ask to be put on the watch list.

mbuwinchester@southernhealth.nhs.uk

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Mummy mot:

The gold standard after giving birth is to have a pelvic floor examination. Even if you don’t feel like you have any residual pelvic floor dysfunction this can help ensure you do you exercises correctly. They can also check you for a diastasis and help you return to physical activity safely and in the right time.

Emily Holding

http://www.emilythephysio.co.uk

Andover

Liz Knowles

https://www.lizknowles.co.uk

Winchester

Mummy mind MOT

An ‘emotional MOT’ to check-in on your postpartum experience and reflect on your birth 

Valentine Gardener

https://www.positivebirthingparenting.com/mummy-mind-mot

Nutritionist:

Whether you are trying to rebuild nutrients after birth or rebalance hormones having the correct advice can make all the difference.

Harriet Bindloss

https://www.thenutritionalbean.com/

Bruton

KatY Bradbury

https://katybradbury.com/

London

Physiotherapy:

Pelvic girdle pain can continue even after you have given birth. Shoulder, knee, and back pain can also be common in your early days postpartum. Ideally, we advise you seek a physio who specialises in Women’s health to ensure they can manage everything going on for you. If you are looking for rehabilitation for Diastasis and or pelvic girdle pain or just to return to exercise safely then I would advise doing so with a specialist.

Emily and Liz above and me ☺️

Octavia Hamilton

www.octaviahamilton.co.uk

Stockbridge and Alresford

Postnatal Doula:

I didn’t understand the importance of what a doula could do until one came into my life. If you don’t have family near by a doula can be a God send in those early days. Their job is to look after the mother not the babe, but they will help with both.

Sara Wood

https://nbalance.co.uk/

Sara@nbalance.co.uk

Alton

National

https://doula.org.uk/membership-region/hampshire/

Scar therapy:

This is a crucial part of recovering after a c-section. It can be started from 6 weeks after surgery providing you have healed well.

Emil, Liz and Octavia all provide this service.

National

https://scarwork.com/access-treatment/find-a-therapist/

Sleep trainer:

If you have a baby that is struggling to sleep and you are getting to the end of your teather, again know there is help out there.

Jess The sleepy Avocado

https://www.thesleepyavocado.com/

Three step rewind for birth trauma

Susanna Dunnet

https://www.hampshirebirthing.com/

This list is not exhaustive, but it’s a good starting point to help you start to feel like if you need some support, it's there at your fingertips.

Join Facebook groups, ask you friends and go to classes too as the more people you meet and speak to the more you will find support out there and other people who have been through what you are going through. You are not alone.