Sleep-deprivation, crazy hormones, while recovering from pregnancy and childbirth, causes neglect of personal needs and most of all, trying to care of the little one is an immediate challenge faced by a mother. A recent study out of the University of British Columbia, has shown that anxiety and related disorders affect about 15 percent of pregnant women and 17 percent of women in early postpartum.
A state of anxiety is on when, a woman in a constant state of overestimating the danger and underestimating her ability to cope with something if it did happen. If your worries are preventing you from interacting with your baby or leaving the house, then they need to be addressed. And if you’re already feeling on edge, avoid seeking things that trigger your anxiety.
Psychological treatments like mindfulness and cognitive behavioural therapy can prove helpful. Before deciding on line of action ask yourself how much your worry is interfering with your life and whether it has become unmanageable. Are your anxious thoughts preventing you from going outside or interacting with your child?
- Share your Emotional State with others: To begin with tell your partner and family how you’re feeling. When you’re feeling depressed and vulnerable, it’s more important than ever to stay connected to family and friends. Isolating yourself will only make your situation feel even bleaker, so make your adult relationships a priority. Let your loved ones know what you need and how you’d like to be supported.
- Seek out a network of other mothers to build a circle of support.
- Take care of yourself. Make yourself and your baby the priority. Give yourself permission to concentrate on yourself and your baby – there is more work involved in this 24/7 job then in holding down a full-time job.
- Take Up Exercise in any form: No need to overdo it: a 30-minute walk each day will work wonders. Stretching exercises such as those found in yoga have shown to be especially effective. Research supports the effectiveness of mindfulness for making you feel calmer and more energized. It can also help you to become more aware of what you need and what you feel. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists say that exercise helps to strengthen the abdominal muscles, relieves stress, promotes better sleep, and boosts energy.
- Do what you can to get plenty of rest—from enlisting the help of your partner or family members to catching naps when you can.
- Find small ways to pamper yourself, like taking a bubble bath, savoring a hot cup of tea, or lighting scented candles. Get a massage.
- Make meals a priority. When you’re depressed, nutrition often suffers. What you eat has an impact on mood, as well as the quality of your breast milk, so do your best to establish healthy eating habits.
- Keep the lines of communication with your partner. Many things change following the birth of a baby, including roles and expectations. For many couples, a key source of strain is the post-baby division of household and childcare responsibilities. It’s important to talk about these issues, rather than letting them fester.