Unfiltered: Moms Get Real About How Their Body Changed After Having Kids

Ask any mom about the changes to their body after having children. You'll get myriad descriptions of what pregnancy and the post-partum period, the fourth trimester, do to a woman's body.

Everyone knows that most women experience stretch marks across their abdomens, but that is just the tip of the iceberg for many. This makes discussions about women's feeling about carrying and birthing a child and the mental health aspect of childbirth and recovery extremely important. 

That said, here are some honest, unfiltered thoughts from moms who've discovered the hardships and blessings their post-partum bodies have to offer.

Aging Isn't Always Graceful

One of the top comments from mothers about changes to their skin after having children is that they aged virtually overnight. 

While this isn't true, the appearance of everything from stretch marks, loose skin, the mask of pregnancy, and linea nigra — the line that appears down the center of some women's pregnant bellies — can all wreak havoc on the way a woman sees herself and her perception of beauty. 

In a world where flawless skin is the (unhealthy) standard, the mental strain on a woman who's just given birth can be severe. The six-week post-partum time, when everything is slowly returning to its pre-pregnancy form, can be excruciating.

Bladder Control Issues

One prevalent complaint among mothers is the loss of bladder control after childbirth. Because pregnancy loosens all the joints in a woman's body — some permanently — pelvic floor muscles are often left in a hyper-weakened state. 

Just like any other muscle group, these muscles must be restrengthened and worked to regain the bladder control you had before having children. 

Several women suggested a physical therapy course for women wanting to strengthen their pelvic floor muscles, swearing that it “worked practical miracles.”

Dental Hygiene Is a Must

One area that doesn't get enough ‘screen time' is the need for excellent dental care before, during, and after pregnancy. Because bad dental hygiene can lead to life-threatening bacterial infections, getting regular checkups and proper dental care is extremely important. 

As one individual also pointed out, the hormones that loosen other joints in your body to help prepare for childbirth also affect your jaw and gums. 

Always let your dental provider know you're pregnant so proper precautions are taken during x-rays and complex dental care. This information is also essential in situations when you may need anesthetics and pain medication prescriptions. 

Permanent Changes Post Pregnancy

Have you ever heard a woman complain about how her feet got larger after she had children? This instance isn't an old wives' tale. Once again, those pesky hormones that loosen all those joints can cause your feet and nose to get permanently larger. 

After my third daughter was born, I realized that my shoe size had changed from an eight to a nine. Now, after my son, I wear a size ten, and because my feet are also permanently wider, shopping for new shoes is always fun. 

A recent topic among pregnant and post-pregnant women is the phenomenon of pregnancy nose, in which a pregnant woman's nose grows. Sometimes those changes can be, unfortunately, permanent. 

Ask if We Care

Day-to-day life might make us cringe when we look in the mirror or purchase new shoes. We might wish, like everything, for our bodies to be what they were before our babies were born. 

But if you ask most mothers if they'd still have their children if given a second chance, they'd say “yes.” 

Because no matter what, our bodies will change and age, but the incredible gift that is our children should never be taken for granted.

This article was inspired by this thread.

This article is produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.