• By Laurel J. Kelly

Housecall: Postpartum complications — health concerns for new mothers

June 3, 2019
a close-up of a young couple and their newborn, sitting together on a couch

THIS WEEK'S TOP TOPICS
Postpartum complications: What you need to know 
After childbirth, you're likely to be focused on caring for your baby. But health problems for new mothers, some life-threatening, can happen in the weeks and months after giving birth. And many aren't aware of the warning signs. Here's what you need to know about postpartum complications.

Hair loss
People typically lose about 100 hairs a day. This usually doesn't cause noticeable thinning of scalp hair because new hair is growing in at the same time. Noticeable hair loss occurs when this cycle of hair growth and shedding is disrupted or when the hair follicle is destroyed and replaced with scar tissue. Learn what's to blame, the medications and procedures that may help, and whether you can avoid losing your hair in the first place.

EXPERT ANSWERS
Is isolated systolic hypertension a health concern?
Isolated systolic hypertension occurs when the diastolic pressure — the bottom number in the blood pressure reading — is in the normal range, but the systolic pressure — the top number — is high. Having a high systolic pressure for a long period of time can increase your risk of having significant cardiovascular problems, such as a heart attack or stroke. Learn more from Dr. Sheldon Sheps, an emeritus Mayo Clinic hypertension and peripheral vascular diseases specialist.

How harmful is too much sitting?
Research has linked sitting for long periods of time with a number of health concerns. They include obesity and a cluster of conditions, including increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist and abnormal cholesterol levels, that make up metabolic syndrome. Too much sitting overall and prolonged periods of sitting also seem to increase the risk of death from cardiovascular disease and cancer. Learn more from Dr. Edward Laskowski, a Mayo Clinic physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist and co-director of the Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine Center.

PLUS ADDITIONAL HIGHLIGHTS
Asthma treatment: Do complementary approaches work?
Poor color vision
Yips
Video: 'Punk Guitarist Survives Brain Tumor'

HEALTHY RECIPES
Spinach and mushroom frittata

Savory vegetable dip
Jamaican barbecued pork tenderloin
Carrot cake

HEALTH TIP OF THE WEEK
Have dark skin? You still need sunscreen

If you have dark skin, you may not burn as easily as your fair-skinned friends. You're not off the hook, though. If you spend time outdoors during daylight hours, you need to use sunscreen. Regardless of skin type, the sun's energy penetrates deeply into the skin. Ultimately, this damage may lead to skin cancer.

Need practical advice on diet and exercise? Want creative solutions for stress and other lifestyle issues? Discover more healthy lifestyle topics at mayoclinic.org. 

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