While having a baby might be one of the most precious moments of your life, the erratic hours, lack of sleep, stress, and hormones can take a toll on your mental, health.
The scary truth is that as per the Centers for Disease Control, 11 to 20% of women who give birth each year have postpartum depression symptoms.’
If you are a new mom and feeling the blues lately, here are some depression busters.
1) Get moving
Exercising can help alleviate anxiety and depression, improve mental health and bring about a positive difference in your life. Backing this is a study by researchers from the University of Birmingham (published in the British Journal of General Practice).
It stated that exercising, be it in groups or alone or when added to other interventions is effective in reducing postpartum depressive symptoms.
Now, remember to go gentle on yourself as your body has been through a lot in the past few months.
It is easy to lose yourself in the world of feeding and diapers but isolating yourself will make you feel more depressed and disconnected from the world.
Stress management becomes more difficult during such times. Keep in mind, there are ways to work around socializing.
You can catch up with your friends at a nearby coffee shop so that you know can rush back immediately if you have to, or you can meet at a mall that has a feeding room.
3) Get the right nutrition
Did you know that in the study conducted by Coppen A and Bolander-Gouaille C (published in J Psychopharmacol. 2005), it was found out that depressive patients had low folate and low vitamin B12?
Surprisingly, these are the among the many nutrients a mother loses during and post pregnancy. If you are feeling the blues more than usual, it is best to visit your doc to see if you are suffering from any deficiency.
Also, ensure that you are eating a wholesome diet for strength and proper functioning of the body.
4) Find a support system
“I deal with postpartum feelings by reaching out to mom friends. I became very close to some of the women in my prenatal yoga class,” Alyssa Milano – American Actress, Activist, and Producer.
Finding a support system can really help in shifting your perspective and give you the solace that you are not alone in all of this. Plus, you can exchange some valuable tips with each other.
Do not fret if you do not have any around you as there are several online groups that you can be a part of.
5) Ask for assistance
As much as we would like to believe that we are a superwoman, it is a tough act to follow. Nobody in your family is going through what you are so the chances of them understanding your situation completely are low.
Articulate your concerns with your husband and family members and seek assistance. You can hire someone or ask for your dear ones to chip in when it comes to doing the household chores or taking care of your baby for a short period of time.
6) Seek professional help
If you feel that you can be a threat to yourself or your baby, it is highly recommended that you seek professional help. Psychotherapists in India are well equipped to offer therapy and set you off on a path to recovery.
Family Counseling Services can also help to make members understand your situation better.
7) Squeeze in that sleep
As per a study published in Dialogues Clin Neurosci. 2008 Sep by David Nutt, ‘Links between sleep and depression are strong… The symptoms cause huge distress, have a major impact on quality of life, and are a strong risk factor for suicide.’ So, lack of sleep is no laughing matter.
While eight hours might be a luxury, try to make sleep a priority and squeeze in as much as you can. Once again, there is no harm in asking for external help.
8) Do the little things that make you happy
Yes, being a mom holds a lot of responsibility and your baby needs to be your priority. But that does not mean that you completely lose yourself in the process and leave aside doing things that made you happy. Think of it this way, when you are content, you will naturally be able to give more to your baby.
Veena Rao, Housewife shares, “After my baby, I stopped music practice, something that I was deeply passionate about. But as much as I loved my son, I realized that I was not completely happy. So, my husband suggested that I take out the time and continue my singing.
Trust me, it made a huge difference as it worked like therapy and the sense of fulfillment and purpose helped me be a better mom.”
9) Be mindful
Now that you are aware of what you are going through, you can be mindful of your actions. Take a moment to stop and observe your behavior and see if it is in the best interest of yourself or your baby.
Bond and connect with your little one as you know you will cherish these moments forever.
How Café Counsel can help:
Cafe Counsel is an on-demand mental and emotional well-being service provider where you matter the most. Our counseling program is tailor-made around your needs, comfort, benefits, and convenience.
We respect your need for privacy and provide you with a platform where you can heal in the comfort of your space.
We use technology to connect you with qualified and experienced counselors, psychologist, psychotherapists, life coaches and career counselors to steer you through your difficult and testing times.
Our experts are handpicked through a verified onboarding process, offering you the best of the breed experience.
While being a new mom can be a mixed bag of bliss and testing times, remember, you are not alone in all of this.