Trenches in question

"It's nothing, it's your trenches!" That's what you'll be told when you complain of having contractions in the days following delivery. Why these pains, how to calm them? The explanations of Professor Jacques Lansac, gynecologist-obstetrician.

What are the trenches?

  • Trenches are contractions that occur in the days following delivery. Why do we use this curious word "trenches"? Because formerly, the word "trenches" was used to designate a strong stomach ache due to colics. By extension, the term was applied to abdominal spasms felt after delivery. Nothing to do with a warlike metaphor that could make you fear the worst!

Where do these pains come from?

The triple mission of the trenches? Avoid bleeding by closing the blood vessels after birth, help the uterus to regain its original size and evacuate lochia.
  • The trenches featured prominently in the hit parade of the various and varied disadvantages occurring during the series of layers. They are simply caused by uterine contractions. No, they do not stop once your baby is born, they play extra time! Not to make you suffer for free, rest assured.

These contractions are actually triply useful:

  • Immediately after delivery, they allow to close the vessels of the uterus which had previously irrigated the placenta; if they remained wide open, they would run the risk of hemorrhage. Deprived of flow, these vessels will also dwindle over the days until they become simple capillaries.
  • These contractions help the uterus to regain its original size, that of a big fig while it measured more than 30 cm at the end of pregnancy.
  • And of three, they "cleanse" the uterus : they bring out the last small debris and clots, causing bleeding called lochia. In general, trenches carry out this triple mission in three to four days, sometimes a week.

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