Around 1 in 5 women need some help to consider their own emotional health because of low mood and raised anxiety during pregnancy, or in the first year after their baby is born.
It’s important to seek help as soon as possible if you think you might be depressed. Your symptoms could have a significant impact on you, your baby, and your family, and you can feel better if you get help. You do not have to struggle on alone.
With the right support, which can include self-help strategies and therapy, most women make a full recovery.
“Let’s Talk helped me understand that I was not alone and that I did not need to feel so guilty and afraid. I really want other mums to get help as soon as they can if they are struggling so they can begin to enjoy their family life.”
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What is it?
Having a baby is a significant life event and can trigger depression and anxiety that may be more difficult to manage at this time of your life.
Mums may feel ashamed or scared to tell other people or ask for help. But asking for help is a sign that you are doing the best for your baby, yourself and family.
When your emotional health is not good you may find that you withdraw from people or activities you used to enjoy, or spend a lot of time worrying about your future or your baby’s future. You may be more tense and irritable. This can have a big impact on your mood and make it difficult for you to be the mum you want to be. This can often make you feel worse.
If you feel you are at risk of harming yourself or your baby it is very important that you seek help. See Need help now.
The good news is that there is help to make you feel better and cope with the challenges of pregnancy and looking after a baby.
You could ask yourself a few questions about how things are for you at the moment:
- Do you find that you avoid meeting up with people or avoid doing things which you used to enjoy?
- Do you spend a lot of time worrying about things which might go wrong in the future for you or your family?
- Do you spend a lot of time going over things from your past?
- Are you having lots of distressing thoughts about giving birth, either because you are very anxious about giving birth or because the birth did not go as you planned?
- Do you find it difficult to rest or sleep when your baby sleeps?
- Do you often tell yourself that you are never going to be a good enough mum?
- Are people you are close to saying that they are worried about you?
How Let's Talk can help
At Let’s Talk we will assess your needs and offer you the appropriate treatment to help you to get back on track. The help we offer may include self-help, attending a course, individual guided self-help over the telephone or face-to-face therapy sessions. You may also be advised by your GP to consider anti-depressant medication.
If you would like some help to improve your emotional health there are many different options. You could start by talking to someone you trust. Some women will prefer to talk to a health professional; you could approach your midwife, health visitor or GP. Asking for help is a sign that you are trying to do your best to overcome a problem.
At Let’s Talk we will take some time with you to work out what are the main difficulties are which are affecting your mood and then together we can come up with a plan to improve your mood or reduce your stress and anxiety.