RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - The first 12 weeks of a baby’s life after birth can be known as the fourth trimester. While this is an exciting time, it is also one of great adjustment and development for both the baby and the mother.
First-time mothers, especially, need support as they transition to becoming a family with a baby.
The midwives at Bon Secours St. Francis Medical Center in Midlothian prepare their patients for the fourth trimester through a program offered during pregnancy, known as “centering.” Session topics related to the fourth trimester include baby care, breast feeding and other issues that can arise during the postpartum period such as depression.
Midwives evaluate patients at two weeks and six weeks after delivery. If a postpartum evaluation determines that physical therapy is needed to strengthen or repair pelvic floor muscles and tissue damaged during birth, the midwife can assist with referral to a physical therapist.
The Bon Secours midwives take pride in helping women at all ages and stages of life, including during pregnancy, labor and delivery.
Various aspects of the fourth trimester are explored from the perspectives of a certified nurse midwife at Bon Secours St. Francis Medical Center, a certified pelvic floor physical therapist with Bon Secours Sports Medicine & Physical Therapy, and a patient who partnered with the midwifery practice at Bon Secours St. Francis for the birth of her first child.