Your 6-week postnatal check
You should have your postnatal check 6 to 8 weeks after your baby’s birth to make sure you feel well and are recovering properly.
Your GP surgery should offer and provide you with a postnatal check. You can request an appointment for a check yourself, especially if you have any concerns. It’s a good idea to make a list of questions to take along with you.
Your baby’s health should also be checked at around this time by a GP. This check is known as the baby’s 6 to 8 week check.
Your postnatal check can be done immediately before or after your baby’s 6 to 8 week check. But it can also be done at a separate time if you would like it to be.
You can read more about what happens at your baby’s 6 to 8 week check.
What may happen at your postnatal check
The following is usually offered at your postnatal check, although this may vary according to where you live:
- You’ll be asked how you’re feeling as part of a general discussion about your mental health and wellbeing.
- You’ll be asked if you still have any vaginal discharge and whether you’ve had a period since the birth.
- Your blood pressure will be checked if you had problems during pregnancy or immediately after the birth.
- You may be offered an examination to see if your stitches have healed if you had an episiotomy or caesarean section.
- If you were due for cervical screening while pregnant, this should be rescheduled for 12 weeks after the birth.
- You’ll be asked about contraception.
- You may be given advice about the use of vitamin D supplements if you’re breastfeeding (vitamin D should help both you and your baby).
- If you’re overweight or obese, with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more, you may be weighed. Your doctor should give you weight loss advice and guidance on healthy eating and physical activity.
Tell your doctor if…
- you’re feeling sad or anxious – looking after a baby can sometimes feel overwhelming. Do not feel you have to struggle alone or put on a brave face. It’s not a sign that you’re a bad mother. You need to get help, as you may have postnatal depression. Your doctor or health visitor can provide help and support.
- you’re having trouble with farting or holding in your pee, or you’re soiling yourself with poo
- having sex is painful
- you’re not sure you’ve had all of the current recommended adult vaccines, such as the MMR vaccine or COVID-19 vaccine