Are you a mom-to-be worried about all the things that could go wrong? Or a new mom feeling overwhelmed by the sudden responsibility? You are not alone. Many women feel stressed out during pregnancy and after giving birth. It could be the hormones, lack of sleep, or constant worry about your baby’s health and well-being. It’s okay to feel anxious, but to allow these stresses to take over your life is not healthy for you or your baby.
Studies reveal that pregnant women who are under a lot of stress are more likely to have babies with low birth weight. Stress can negatively impact a mother’s immune system, making her more susceptible to infections. So, finding ways to relax and reduce anxiety during pregnancy and after childbirth is essential.
Know There’s Help Available:
Honestly, one of the biggest concerns during pregnancy and after childbirth is the possibility of birth injuries. All sorts of thoughts make a home in your head – what if something goes wrong during delivery? What if the baby is born with a disability? What if the nurse drops my baby?
Having these fears is normal, but it’s important to remember that you are not alone. Voice your concerns to your doctor or midwife. They can help you understand the risks and what to expect during delivery.
If you’re still feeling anxious, there are also counselors and support groups available to help new moms. And, if that doesn’t help, please rest easy knowing that the Birth Injury Justice Center will help you and your family if something goes wrong.
Managing Insomnia and PPD:
No one will tell you this, but you will likely suffer from some form of insomnia after you have a baby. It could be because you’re up all night feeding or are just so anxious about your new baby that you can’t fall asleep. And you might also suffer from postpartum depression (PPD).
PPD is real, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of. Please consult your doctor if you suspect symptoms of PPD. They can help you get the treatment you need.
In the meantime, the following tips will help you get some shut-eye:
- Set a bedtime routine and follow it. A warm bubble bath, reading a book, or listening to calm music can help you relax and get ready for bed.
- Put away all electronics 30 minutes before bed. The blue light from screens can interfere with your sleep.
- Create a comfortable sleeping environment. Ensure your room is peaceful and cool.
- Sleep when the baby sleeps. It might not always be possible, but when you can, take a nap during the day.
Taking Care of Household Chores:
Becoming a new mom just adds to the never-ending list of already existing responsibilities. You must feel worried about how you will get it all done – work, taking care of the baby, and maintaining the house. But, here’s the thing, you don’t have to do it alone! No one’s expecting you to be Superwoman. And no one’s judging you.
Delegate some household tasks to your partner or other family members. If you don’t have help at home, some services can do things like laundry, grocery shopping, and cleaning. All you have to do is ask!
When it comes to meal preparation, you can cook in batches and freeze individual portions. Several meal delivery services can provide you with healthy and delicious food.
Getting Back in Shape:
Your body majorly transforms during pregnancy and childbirth. And, it can be hard to get your body back to where it was before. And that can be highly frustrating and discouraging for some women.
But, don’t worry, you will get there! Allow yourself some time to recover and heal first. And then, when you’re ready, start slow with some simple exercises like walking or gentle stretching. You can also sign up for a postnatal yoga class or join a mommy and me class. As your strength and energy levels increase, you can start adding more challenging exercises to your routine.
The easier part of all this is to watch what you eat. Be sure to eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. And limit your sugar and alcohol intake!
Missing Social Life:
It’s an unspoken rule that you’re supposed to sacrifice your social life when you have a baby. And new moms aren’t pleased with it! You may feel like you’re being left out or are missing out on all the fun.
But, it’s only temporary! You can still go out and see your friends – you just have to plan wisely. Choose baby-friendly activities, like going to a park or meeting for coffee. And try to go out when your partner can watch the baby or when the babysitter is available.
It’s also essential to find other moms to connect with. There are many online groups and forums where you can chat with other moms and share your experiences. You might even make some new friends!
Parenting is hard work! Between Braxton hicks’ contractions, pregnancy brain, and trying to get some semblance of a life back, it’s hard to keep your sanity. But you don’t have to lose your mind. Just take things one step at a time, be patient with yourself, and ask for help when needed.
Good luck, Mommy!