We need to talk about you…
How are you?
No really, how are YOU?
This is a conversation we need to be having with our mum friends on a regular basis and we need to be honest with the reply. It’s ok to not use the typical answer of “I’m ok, just a bit tired”. If that’s really the case then that’s great but if it’s not then speak to your trusted friends and tell the honest truth.
Everyone experiences the ‘baby blues’ after having a baby but if you are still feeling low and down after a few weeks then it might be time to talk to someone. It’s not anything to be ashamed of. Taking care of yourself is as important as looking after your baby. After all, you’ll be the best mum you can be for your little one if you are the best version of yourself you can be. Post Natal Depression is a common issue which affects 1 in every 10 women* who give birth. Sometimes you can tell something doesn’t feel right and sometimes it can creep up on you. It’s important you feel you can talk to your partner, friends, health visitor and GP about how and what you are feeling.
Common symptoms of postnatal depression are:
– Feeling irritable and angry
– Crying or often being on the verge of crying
– Feeling unable to cope
– Having negative thoughts about yourself, such as “I am a bad mother”
– Worrying unnecessarily about things that wouldn’t normally bother you
– Excessive worry about your baby’s health
– Being afraid of being left alone with your baby
– Uncontrollable feelings of panic
– Overwhelming fears, for example fear of dying
– Dreams about harming your baby
– Sleeping problems
– Feeling exhausted and lethargic
– Lack of interest in your surroundings and appearance, or becoming obsessively tidy
– Trouble concentrating and feeling distracted
– Gaining or losing large amounts of weight
– Loss of pleasure in activities you usually enjoy, including loss of libido (sex drive)
– Feelings of guilt that you’re a bad mother
This year we are supporting PANDAS, a charity whose aim is to make sure that no individual, family or carer feels as if they are alone. They have a variety of support services available to ensure that help is delivered in a way to suit you. No one suffering any form of mental illness should feel they are on their own. You can call them on 0843 2898 401 between 9am and 8pm 7 days a week or you can visit their website at http://www.pandasfoundation.org.uk
Exercise is proven to be a great mood changer as it releases all those good happy chemicals into your body and can make you feel more like yourself. Sweaty Mama run classes where you can exercise with your child and not leave them in a creche or with family, so they are getting precious time with mum and you get to meet new friends, exercise with other mums and help beat those baby blues.
*Information sourced from NHS and PANDAS website.