Pregnancy information

Your 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.

What may happen at your postnatal check

The following is usually offered, though 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 have 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 a cervical screening test 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 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. Don't feel you have to struggle alone or put on a brave face. It's not a sign that you are 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 holding in your pee or wind, or you are 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

See more about your post-pregnancy body.

You can find more information on pregnancy in the 'Your Pregnancy and Birth book'.

Last Updated: 25/07/2023 07:27:49
The information on this page has been adapted by NHS Wales from original content supplied by NHS UK NHS website