Real Stories & Tips by Mums Who Have Had a Cesarean Section in Singapore

From what they don’t tell you to pre-op C-section tips, real mamas share their wits of having a Cesarean Section in Singapore

That old anecdote of stuff “too posh to push” is exactly that. Old. Equal to WHO, cesarean sections (also tabbed C-sections) are ‘on the rise in an precedented way’ written for more than 21% of births globally in 2015, up from just over 12% in 2000. Yet there’s still a lack of open discussion well-nigh cesareans in lineage preparation classes and the stigma tying to C-sections doesn’t help those mentally preparing for an elective C-section. Considering of this lack of openness, some may be left feeling like they have failed if they end up having an emergency cesarean (which you most certainly have not, mama).

That said, we are not promoting C-sections in this article, though we are promoting being informed well-nigh them (even if you are planning and hoping for a vaginal birth). Afterall, there can be risks (to both mother and victual – increasingly on this later), as with any surgery. Read on for cesarean tips from prepping yourself, to things to know during your c-section, scar management and more!

Jump to:
1. Cesarean section: planned (elective) c-section vs emergency c-section
2. Reasons for having a cesarean section
3. Why stuff informed well-nigh c-sections helps
4. Cesarean Tips and Personal Stories by Mums in Singapore
Prepping yourself for a C-section
Pre C-section Practical Tips
During the C-section Tips
Cesareans: What they don’t tell you
Recovery and Post C-section Tips
Cesarean Scar Management
C-Section Extras for your Hospital Bag
Post C-Section Tips
5. Meet our C-section Panel of Mums

What is a Cesarean section (c-section)?

  • A cesarean section (c-section) or cesarean delivery, is the surgical procedure by which a victual is delivered by an incision in your stomach (above your bikini line) and womb.
  • Planned c-section: If you know you will need a c-section surpassing you go into labour, this is tabbed a planned (elective) c-section. In Singapore the names ‘planned’ and ‘elective’ c-sections are used interchangeably however in some countries a c-section that is requested for non-medical reasons is tabbed an ‘elective’ c-section vs. a planned c-section is one planned superiority for medical reasons.
  • Emergency c-section: takes place if you have an unplanned c-section surpassing or without the onset of labour. This happens if there is a health risk to the mother and/or baby.

Read More: Birth Story: How I Had a Natural Breech VBAC Lineage in Singapore 

Reasons for Having a Cesarean section in Singapore

There are many reasons you may have a planned cesarean. In unrepealable circumstances it can be medically necessary for the safety of the victual or mother. These include:

  • Physical complications with victual or mother during pregnancy or labour
  • Certain foetal positions
  • Placenta Previa or other placenta problems
  • If you are expecting multiple babies
  • Previous C-section (within 18 months)

There has been an increase in cesareans in recent decades. Equal to WHO, this is possibly considering ‘Caesarean section has wilt a very unscratched procedure in many parts of the world to the point of considering it scrutinizingly infallible. Some of the most omnipresent reasons overdue this rise are the fear of pain during birth including the pain of uterine contractions, the convenience to schedule the lineage when it is most suitable for families or health superintendency professionals… In some cultures, caesarean section allows choosing and setting the day of the birth equal to unrepealable believes of luck or largest refreshing for the newborn’s future… In addition, in some societies, wordage by cesarean section is perceived to preserve largest the pelvic floor resulting in less urinary incontinence in the future or sooner and increasingly satisfactory return to sexual life.’

Read more: Costs of Giving Lineage in Singapore

cesarean

C-sections – be informed

Having a Cesarean is not the ‘easy option’ when giving lineage and there can be risks to both mother and baby, as with any surgery. There is moreover research to indicate that babies born surpassing 39 weeks via c-section can wits breathing difficulties (that usually improves within days). Furthermore a Cesarean section is detrimental to baby’s normal gut microbiota minutiae and new research shows that ‘delivery by caesarean section was associated with increasingly than a doubled risk of later asthma and allergies, as well as significant changes in the sonnet of the gut microbiota. However, at one year of age, the risk of asthma was reduced in C-section-born children if their gut microbiota had recovered from its initial disruption and begun to mature normally’. If you have concerns well-nigh your baby’s microbiota and allergies/asthma, you can squint into ‘vaginal seeding’ (exposing babies born by C-section to vaginal bacteria) or a ‘fecal transplant’ – although we are unsure if any doctors in Singapore are unshut to this or whether it works.

Read More: Birth Story: How I Had a Natural Breech VBAC Lineage in Singapore 

Bring prepared for a C-section helps have a positive lineage experience

So while we are not advocating for C-sections in this article, we are for respecting medical translating and each mother’s decision when it comes to giving lineage and parenting.

We found mums who were clued up superiority of time on what to expect in a C-section had a more positive vein to their lineage experience and had an easier recovery from their Caesarean. So plane if you are planning and hoping for a vaginal lineage – it is still worth reading this epic tip-packed article, just in case.

So here, mama-to-mama, is our ultimate C-section guide with tips from mamas who have all had caesarians – elective, planned and emergency.

Medical disclaimer: We are all mamas who have been there, but we are not medical professionals. Please talk to your healthcare provider to make informed decisions together.

Guide to a Cesarean Section in Singapore:
C-Section Tips by Mamas, for Mamas

pregnancy guide

Prepping yourself for your C-section

“Prepare yourself emotionally for a C-section if you know you will need one. Speak with friends who have been there to help come to terms with it if it is not your chosen lineage option. You have not failed. I was disappointed when I was told I would need a C-section and struggled with it until my sister said it doesn’t matter how the victual comes into this world, as long the victual and I were safe! These words hit home as prior to that I was focusing my energy on trying to get the victual to turn from its breech position, rather than mentally adjusting to what was going to happen.”  Pamela 

“I recommend these two books – “The Essential C-Section Guide: Pain Control, Healing at Home, Getting your Soul When and Everything Else You Need to Know Well-nigh a Caesarean Birth” by Maureen Connolly and Dana Sullivan and “Strategies for the C-Section Mom: A Complete Fitness, Nutrition and Lifestyle Guide” by Mary Beth Knight.” Sunita 

“Ignore people who finger the need to criticise your visualization to have a planned C-section. I had a few people ask me why I was not having a “natural” lineage – but what is a “natural” birth? I think most people in the first world will have some level of medical intervention. Having a C-section is an opportunity that we are fortunate to have in Singapore.” Ursula 

“Obviously having a planned C-section is a very variegated wits to having one in an emergency: there is time and space for you to prepare mentally for what is well-nigh to unfold, and the speed of the process is to a unrepealable extent dictated by you. The nervousness, excitement and elation is worldwide to any birth, but my personal wits with a planned C-section felt special and true to me.” Pippa 

“Keep an unshut mind – my emergency C-section left me feeling disappointed – mainly considering I wasn’t awake for my daughters lineage as it was under GA. My doctor offered counselling, but I found talking to a friend who had a similar emergency C-section was the weightier way of processing my experience. As you can’t prepare for an emergency situation, it’s important to requite yourself time to ‘heal’ without your wits – for both you and your husband”. Hayley 

“I wish I had had the opportunity to fully debrief and understand what happened during the emergency C-section with the obstetrician. I think this would have unliable me to process the wits and to not let it overshadow the wonderful inrush of my first baby.” Ursula 

“Research C-sections, plane if you plan a natural birth. Six out of eight of our prenatal information group had a planned or emergency C-section, but we only spent half a session glossing over them. Stuff convinced my friend was having a water lineage meant she had washed-up little research and went into surgery for an emergency C-section completely clueless, and as a result, she took a long time to come to terms with her lineage wits which unauthentic her recovery.” Beate

gynae singapore obgyn pregnancy doctor checkup

Pre C-section Practical Tips

“I attended a pre-natal Pilates matriculation twice a week. It was fantastic for maintaining cadre strength, which I am sure unsalaried to my quick recovery.” Carla 

“Consider a full “all off” waxing to stave any undignified bedside shaving pre op (incision site needs to be clear). Pippa 

“If you can segregate a C-section timing, schedule it early in the morning as your doctor will want you fasted.”

“I am sure that my quick recovery from the planned C-section (both mentally and physically) was due to the fact that during my second pregnancy, I kept up with a fitness plan right until the final week and did not put on so much weight. Feeling strong and healthy going into hospital gave me a positive attitude.” Ursula 

During the C-section Tips

Skin ON Skin – variegated hospitals have variegated policies, so trammels with your doctor if you will be unliable Skin on Skin in the operating theatre.

“I didn’t have skin-to-skin immediately, so without a quick petting (both of us wrapped in blankets, it is FREEZING in the operating theatre) my husband accompanied the victual for medical checks, which we prioritised. Also, if your husband chooses to follow the victual to the nursery for the medical checks, get him to wear a button-down shirt for easy wangle ‘skin-to-skin’ with the baby.” Sunita

“I had requested ‘skin-to-skin’, but I was only worldly-wise to hold Ada for a couple of minutes surpassing she and my husband left the room whilst they stitched me up. I understand it is standard procedure at Thomson Medical Centre now for babies delivered by C-section to be monitored for a couple of hours without birth. Not seeing or holding Ada for three hours was particularly difficult as with my first natural birth, Noah didn’t leave my stovepipe without stuff delivered.” Pamela 

“I was willful I wanted skin-on-skin and put this in my lineage plan (yes, you can still write out a Birth Plan for C-sections!). Luckily I managed to alimony the victual with me from immediately without lineage (after which the victual was taken with my husband for quick checks while I was stuff stitched up) to inside the recovery room (where nurses helped with breastfeeding) to our room. Planned C-sections can still be a magical lineage wits that needn’t finger like an ‘operation’ with the right support and staff.” Beate 


Cesareans: What They Don’t Tell You

“You will not be allowed to shower until Day 3. Hospital check-outs in Singapore can take up to four hours! Get your partner to go down to inform the staff to start the process as soon as possible! If paying privately, it may be helpful to inform the wall earlier (and to increase the credit vellum limit if necessary) so that the transaction, which may run into the thousands, is processed without a hitch.” Sunita 

“I hadn’t really expected to have the post partum vaginal gory having had a C-section. Bring your own sanitary pads, as the hospital ones can be old fashioned.” Hayley 

“I found recovery harder without a C-section than ‘natural birth’. I couldn’t wrench over, sit up or put my own underwear on for the first week! I was moreover not worldly-wise to siphon my toddler for the first 4 weeks. The pain killers I needed to take for the week pursuit my C-section made me constipated and my legs and feet were swollen for well-nigh two weeks.”   Pamela 

“Okay, everyone is skirting virtually this, but it has got to be said! One of the unconfined things well-nigh a C-section is that your ‘v-jay-jay’ stays intact!” Sunita 

“I had to have an enema which I was NOT anticipating and was NOT happy about- this only happened in Singapore.”

“I was surprised by the value of fundal pressure (where they push lanugo on your stomach to help push the victual out) during the operation, as well as how much unstipulated poking and prodding there was.” Carla 

“The doctors don’t unchangingly wait for your partner to be in the operating theatre to supervise your epidural pre C-section.” Beate 

Recovery and Post C-section Tips

“Keep a plastic stool in your shower at home so that you can sit and shower your lower half and then your upper half without getting your incision wet. Placing a couple of hand towels over the incision bandages helps to alimony the zone dry.” Sunita 

“Stay in hospital as long as you can! At the end of the day it’s major surgery – take it easy on yourself and don’t push yourself too hard. I would make sure I unify to have flipside family member on hand to help and indulge myself a few days of rest without the birth.” Carla

“I found the “football hold” useful for breastfeeding without a C-section as it didn’t put pressure on my scar.” Hayley

“Don’t skip a round of pain meds – in fact, take your pain medication surpassing the last dose wears off completely. The epidural and morphine last longer than you think and plane 24 hours later, I felt pretty pain-free and was a bit blasé well-nigh taking the drugs. Having been through invasive surgery however, it will soon start to smart!” Pippa 

“I invested in a pair of SRC Recovery Shorts, which provided a increasingly well-appointed volitional to the usual tummy bands. They provided the right level of pinch and I wore them everyday for two weeks pursuit the C-section.” Ursula 

“Buy gloriously big granny pants (Guardian and Watsons sell cotton removable ones) as these will imbricate your scar post-op, as well as cradle the sanitary pads. Move or shuffle well-nigh as soon as you can and drink prune juice/eat fibre (though not too much as this can rationalization gas build-up) – they won’t let you out till you have performed the necessary exenterate motion – which may necessitate giving you a suppository!” Pippa 

“The removable Guardian briefs didn’t work for me – depends on your size. If you are anything other than Asian size S-M, you may be largest off with M&S full briefs.” Beate 

“I recommend having a side cot that can nail to the side of the bed to make it easy to pick up and put lanugo the victual whilst you’re resting.” Ursula 

“The IV lard that is inserted stays on you post op while you are in hospital to supervise antibiotics and saline solution for hydration often leaves you with A LOT of water retention. Without giving lineage to a 3.4 kg baby, I weighed myself when I got home (don’t do it!) and had only lost 2kg! Go figure! Drink as much water as you can and stock up on watermelon to well-to-do out the water retention. ” Beate

Cesarean Scar Management

“I was pleasantly surprised by how quickly my scar healed with lashings of Bio-oil. I donned an rubberband corset which my hospital provided and despite stuff warm and rigid, it stopped me from over-extending and took pressure yonder from the scar. Belly Bandit or Bellefit are very popular ones, but you can get cheaper rectal supports in worthier branches of Guardian and Watsons, which do the job just as well.” Pippa 

“I still shudder at the sight of my scar and it is tender to touch six months later. I’d recommend applying a good scar surf as early as possible to help the scar heal.”  Pamela 

“I am extremely happy with my scar which, 2.5 years later, is barely visible and completely flat. I used the Dermatix scar gel provided by my doctor religiously post-delivery. Although expensive, it’s magic stuff. ” Carla 

“If you have to sneeze, cough, or laugh use a pillow to printing versus your stomach muscles- somehow it helps! Get moving as soon as you are worldly-wise to – wiggle your toes, wrench your knees, rotate your ankles. For your first walk, hold yourself as straight as you can. Don’t be tempted to hunch over – hunching will leave that zone healed tight and not fully stretched to normal. ” Beate 

hospital bag packing list pregnancy

C-Section Extras for your Hospital Bag

1. Slip on shoes – nothing that requires limp lanugo to do up
2. Sanitary pads – heavy spritz with wings – you don’t need maternity ones
3. Cardigan or robe – it gets unprepossessed with the air con
4. Peppermint tablets – helps with gas
5. DVT socks
6. Belly band or hospital grade corset – some wear this months without the op, others segregate to try not wear too long so stomach muscles support themselves. Either way, it’s a repletion for the first week or so
7. Really stretchy loose underwear – at least two sizes worthier than your normal size. Segregate full briefs (rib ticklers) – M&S do a good pack
8. Loose fitting pyjamas or yoga pants that come up over the scar area. Assume you will still squint 5 months pregnant so don’t bring your pre-pregnancy clothes
9.  Your own shower gel and shampoo –great smelling products can lift your spirits when you are feeling sore and tender
10. Repletion food/snacks
11. Birth Plan – download a template by clicking the sawed-off below

Download Lineage Plan Template!

Post C-Section Tips

“I recommend the Erin O’Brien Complete Pregnancy Fitness DVD – specifically the Postnatal Rescue section – it only lasts 15 minutes – perfect for rented tired mums!” Sunita

“Being a keen runner and feeling good at 5 weeks post-op, I hit the pavements. In all honesty I had jumped the gun. No horror stories but for conducive internal healing (C-section is a major operation where the surgeon cuts through several layers of muscle) so don’t over do it. Stick to low impact exercise initially!” Pippa 

“I wore the hospital-provided corset for a number of weeks post-delivery. It provided repletion and pinch to the incision area. I moreover believe it unsalaried to regaining shape and reducing my tummy. I started exercising at 10 weeks with (very) slow jogging and personal training sessions.” Carla 

Our C-Section Mama Panel

Pamela, Australian, mama to two kids
Birth History: I had a natural lineage (with epidural) for my first. But for my second delivery, as my girl was flexed/complete breech, I was scheduled for a C-section. I went into labour surpassing the planned stage and as my victual was still breech with the umbilical string virtually her neck, I was told I needed to have an emergency C-section (albeit without GA so I would be awake).
Comparing C-Section to flipside Delivery: Childbirth is scary and I found the procedure of a C-section particularly terrifying. I am a tenancy freak at the weightier of times and had not previously been on the operating table. I found the lack of tenancy (compared to natural childbirth) and feeling of helplessness overwhelming and cried through the unshortened procedure. Having no feeling or sight of what was happening (as they put up a sheet so you don’t see the procedure) made me finger exposed. Plus as I was anticipating having a planned C-section, I was not emotionally prepared to have an “emergency” C-section.

Hayley, British, mama to three kids
Birth History: I unchangingly wanted a natural lineage without drugs and epidural. During my first labour, I got to 8cm dilation on gas and air, but when my baby’s oxygen and heart rate dropped, they tapped my waters and found meconium present so I needed an emergency C-section. As I hadn’t had an epidural, it was washed-up under Unstipulated Anaesthetic. I met my victual two hours later.  It took me months to get over the fact that I wasn’t awake for her lineage and wasn’t the first to hold her. I felt like I had ‘failed’ having got so far lanugo the line, but not making it all the way.
Comparing C-Section to flipside Delivery: For my second delivery, my doctor was supportive of me having a VBAC. I was six days overdue, so I had a C-section scheduled for the pursuit week. I had come to terms with this since it was planned and I knew I would be awake for it. Hearing my baby’s first cry and seeing her be born was magical for myself and my husband – something we had missed out on the first time virtually (as husbands are not unliable in the operating room for emergency C-sections under GA).

Sunita, Singaporean, mama to three kids
Birth History: I had an elective C-section for both my children. No physical medical reason whispered from the fact that I did not want to go through labour and I liked that with an elective C-section, I could schedule the lineage date. I found it surprisingly difficult to find people who were supportive of me having an elective C-section. I felt judged for not wanting to go through labour and made to finger that my educated, informed visualization for my soul and my victual was not valid or the “right” thing to do.
Comparing C-Section to flipside Delivery: I recovered well from both my C-sections. I think the key to a fast recovery is keeping fit and zippy with a strong cadre between pregnancies. My doctor cleared me to go for gentle walks with the dogs without 1 week, jogs without 5 weeks and sit-ups without 12 weeks.

Pippa, British, mama to four kids
Birth History: Planned C-section due to breech positioning.
Comparing C-Section to flipside Delivery: The planned speciality of a scheduled C-section did request to my control-freak tendencies and the tried and tested success and, surprisingly, speedy recovery time of my first caesarean dictated my nomination for a ‘through the sun-roof’ wordage for my second imminent arrival.

 

Carla, Australian, mama to two kids

Birth History:  I was induced at 38 weeks considering of when pain that I could no longer manage. Labour did not progress well and without my waters were broken, my thoroughbred pressure dropped and my victual went into distress. Within 20 minutes, we were in the operating theatre. I had once had an epidural surpassing my waters were broken, so I was worldly-wise to be awake for the C-section. The transition from wordage suite to operating theatre was less than ten minutes. My doctor and the hospital staff were so wifely and reassuring.
Comparing Your C-Section to Flipside Delivery:  I did not hesitate to have a scheduled C-section for my second child. I am very well-appointed with the process and the recovery based on my experience.

Ursula, British, mama to two kids
Birth History: I had an emergency C-section when delivering my first. Without 12 hours of labour, he was “stuck” and it was not possible to unhook him vaginally. I had a spinal anaesthetic and he was out within 15 minutes of like-minded to a C-section. With my second child, I elected for a planned C-section with spinal anaesthetic for a number of reasons. I wanted to stave what was a traumatic and disappointing wits of natural labour that had ended with an emergency C-section anyway. I moreover discussed my options with friends and my obstetrician and the resounding feedback was that the lineage and recovery with a planned C-section would be very different.
Comparing Your C-Section to Flipside Delivery: Recovering from the planned C-section was much quicker than the first time and as quick as many of my friends who have delivered vaginally. I was worldly-wise to walk virtually the hospital room within 24 hours and by the time I was home without 3 days I felt well-appointed pushing the pram virtually the corner to get a much-needed coffee! The fact the lineage was scheduled unliable me to prepare mentally.

Beate, British, mama to two kids
Birth History: I was disappointed to find out that I needed to have an elective C-section due to when issues and a low-lying placenta. However as D-Day neared and without getting used to the idea and knowing that my Doctor respected important lineage plan wishes (like skin-to-skin and rooming in), I started to finger positive well-nigh it and was just excited to meet my baby. Knowing exactly when I would, to the minute, was a bonus!
Comparing C-Section to flipside Delivery: Due to the same when issues a C-section was my only option from the outset for no.2 – this time it was my preferred wordage anyway, stuff the one I knew.

Thank you to all the mums who shared their very personal lineage stories with us to help other mums with their lineage experience. 

Read Part Two Here: All about pre and post C-section exercise routines and some invaluable local Singapore resources (including wraps and massages!) to help you recover from your birth.

 

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