How to Prepare for a C-Section - What to Do Night Before C-Section

How to Prepare for a C-Section – C-Section Preparation Tips from a Second Time C-Section Mama

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If for any reason you end up having a planned C-section, it is important to prepare yourself as much as possible. I ended up with an emergency c-section with my first baby, and was completely unprepared for it. I had no idea what to expect when it came to my recovery, and any hardships I might have due to major abdominal surgery. So, this time around based on how my first labor and delivery went, I chose to have a planned c-section. Since it is planned, I wanted to do just that, and PLAN. I want to be as prepared as possible based on what I learned with my first c-section experience. (Check out my C-Section Hospital Bag Checklist HERE.)

I thought long and hard about my first c-section, and what I wanted to do differently this time and what I needed to prepare myself for that I wasn’t prepared for last time. I considered what the hardest part of recovery was, what really helped the most, and what I could do differently to make this C-section recovery faster and less painful. I’m really hoping this list will help anyone having a planned c-section, so you are less anxious, feel like you have more control over your birth process, and feel better sooner after your surgery so you can just focus on being a new mother and enjoy every minute with your newborn. (Check out my post on C-Section Scar Recovery HERE)

Keep in mind that I am not a doctor. If you have any questions, please ask your doctor to ensure you are doing what is best for you and your baby’s unique situation. These are suggestions based on my personal experience as a c-section mama.

How to Prepare for a C-Section

  1. Get a Wax

I actually did this last time I was pregnant, simply because I wanted to be prepared for a new baby and not have to worry about going to the wax studio for at least my 6 week recovery time period. But, I believe it helped in a huge way with how my scar healed, and how comfortable I was while it healed. They will shave you before a c-section no matter what, because they want the area where the doctor needs to cut to be completely clean.

So, no matter what, the hair where your scar will be is going away. When you wax rather than shave, the hair will grow back much slower which will give your scar more time to heal without having hair growing back around it. When you shave it grows back faster, which causes a VERY itchy scar. So, I really recommend getting a bikini wax about 5-7 days before your c-section to prevent hair growth and keep your incision from getting super itchy.

2. What to Eat Before a C-Section

Fiber, fiber, fiber! For about 3-4 days before Your C-section you’re going to want to focus on a digestion-friendly diet that includes lots of fiber, soups, and easy to digest foods. When you have major abdominal surgery, you will not be able to go to the bathroom for AT LEAST a few days after. You DO NOT want to get backed up after a c-section. I am scarred for life after my first ‘first poop after having a baby’ experience and I’ll just leave it at that.

Trust me. If you prepare for a few days beforehand, and do everything you can to clear out your bowels before you go in for surgery, the easier this first poop will be. It will not be ‘easy’, but anything you can do to prepare yourself and make it more comfortable will be a huge relief. This time around, for about 3 days before my c-section I plan on eating a lot of the foods I suggested in my Pregnancy Constipation post. Here is my meal plan:


  • Warm Lemon Water before breakfast
  • 80 oz. of water throughout the day


  • Oat Bran or Fiber One Cereal with Berries
  • One Apple or Pear


  • Vegetable Soup


  • Yogurt with Flax Seeds, Chia Seeds and Walnuts
  • 3 Probiotic Prunes or a Can of Prune Juice


  • Southwest Black Bean Stuffed Sweet Potato

There are some great High Fiber Meal Ideas and Recipes HERE

*You will not be able to eat or drink anything for at least 8 hours before your c-section. This includes water. Be sure to hydrate the day before!

I also plan on taking Fiber One Bars and Probiotic Prunes to the hospital to snack on while I’m there. These Gummy Fiber Chews would be perfect for before, during and after the hospital, as well. And, I am going to take a stool softener every day for 3-5 days before I go to the hospital and continue to take them after I get home from the hospital until I am able to regularly use the bathroom again. I have a fleet enema and laxatives ready for when I get home to make things a little easier. I know this all sounds glamorous and wonderful… just trust me, and you can thank me later.

3. Book Child and Pet Care

After a C-section you will be in the hospital for about 3 days depending on your situation. Make sure you have child care for any littles you might have at home, and also make sure you have pet care planned while you’re gone.

4. Prepare Your Home

You’re going to want to prepare where you will be coming home from the hospital to before you go, because you’ll be too weak and sore to do much of anything once you’re home. Stock up on groceries, household goods, frozen meals, and anything else that might make you’re coming home easier. Some tips for what to have on hand:

  1. Stools – If you have a toddler at home, stools are a great way to help them be more independent since you won’t be able to lift them for about 6 weeks. Have a few stools around the house so they can brush teeth and use the bathroom without you lifting them, climb into bed, climb onto the couch, etc. (THESE are great, and come in a set of 2.)
  2. Pillows – Have pillows handy in different areas you think you’ll be resting. After a c-section, everything hurts. It helps to hold a pillow against your incision when you sneeze, laugh, cough, etc. The pressure of the pillow eases the pain of these things.
  3. C-Section Friendly Clothing – Before you go to the hospital have a good selection of c-section friendly clothes set aside. C-section friendly clothes include high-waisted leggings, loose, flowy clothes and tops, nightgowns and dresses. Basically anything that won’t sit against or irritate your incision. (I LOVE these foldover pants, and are perfect for a c-section.)
  4. Diaper Caddy or Multiple Changing Stations – This is especially important if you have stairs in your house. You’ll want to avoid the stairs as much as possible. Plan on having a small diaper caddy that can move around the house with you. It should contain full of diaper changing supplies and breastfeeding supplies. At night it helps to just change and feed the baby close to your bed rather than getting up to go to the nursery every time your baby needs a new diaper (which is A LOT!). Also, having a changing station upstairs and one downstairs will be super helpful. I plan on keeping our pack’n’play that has an attached changer on it downstairs for whenever I am down there. (THIS Diaper Caddy is perfect, and super cute.)

5. Ask for Help

Just trust me that you will need help, especially in the first few weeks. Don’t be afraid or too proud to ask for help. You won’t be able to drive or do much of anything in the first two weeks. Make sure you have help on hand to drive you where you need to go, help with laundry, cook, etc. Having a baby is hard. Just be easy on yourself, easy on your body, rest as much as possible, and learn to accept help. C-sections aren’t fun, but if you’re prepared going into them you’ll recover a lot faster!


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4 responses to “How to Prepare for a C-Section – C-Section Preparation Tips from a Second Time C-Section Mama”

  1. […] scar healing time. To find out how to prepare for a c-section, check out my post on C-Section Prep HERE, and find what I use to keep comfortable after my c-section HERE. Here are my c-section scar basics […]

  2. […] need in your hospital bag will be slightly different than a vaginal delivery. (Check out my post on Preparing for Your C-Section HERE) It will be similar, but you may need a few extra items. I feel like a lot of hospital bag […]

  3. […] is the best last meal to eat before a C-section? When it comes to preparing for a C-section, many expectant mothers may be wondering what the best last meal to consume is. After all, […]

  4. […] Preparing for your c-section consists of more than packing and scheduling. It involves preparing your body to undergo major surgery and encouraging your body to heal quickly so you can begin enjoying your time post-partum with your new baby.  […]

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