It is natural to feel a mixture of emotions when you are pregnant or have given birth to your new son or daughter. However, if you feel afraid, anxious or depressed, you must avoid suffering in silence and talk about your feelings with your loved ones and/or a medical professional.
If you are struggling to cope with your new normal, here are the common emotional problems new parents may face.
It is common for many new mothers to experience the baby blues during the first week after childbirth. Due to hormonal changes, you could feel anxious, irritable, depressed, or experience intense mood swings.
Thankfully, the symptoms will reach a peak between three to five days following childbirth, and the negative emotions can often disappear without any specialist treatment.
If, however, the feelings persist for more than two weeks, you could be experiencing postpartum depression. If so, you must speak to a doctor to receive emotional support, counseling and/or medication.
An Anxiety Disorder
While anxiety is normal when pregnant or following the birth of your child, too much anxiety could lead to low self-confidence and the belief you’re an inadequate parent.
If you experience any of the below complaints, it’s a sign you need to talk to a medical professional:
- Panic attacks
- Feelings of restless and irritability
- Heart palpitations, a tight chest, or tense muscles
- Fear that prevents you from going outside with your baby
- Anxious thoughts that interfere with daily tasks
If you believe you are living with an anxiety disorder, turn to The Recovery Village to receive the professional help you need to take back control of your emotions.
Many new parents can feel worried or concerned when they don’t instantly bond with their baby. However, it doesn’t happen immediately for 20% of new moms and dads, and it might take a few days or weeks to feel a connection to your new son or daughter.
As a result, you might experience feelings of:
Thankfully, with rest and emotional support from your loved ones, you might soon develop a stronger bond with your baby. If, however, the feelings do not subside, talk to a health professional.
Approximately 10-20% of new moms will reportedly experience postpartum depression. It is common for depression to gradually increase for many months. If left untreated, it could develop into a chronic condition or may return should you become pregnant.
If you experience the following emotions for more than a few days, it’s likely you are experiencing postpartum depression:
- A low mood
- Feelings of inadequacy, guilt, hopelessness, emptiness, or intense sadness
- Fear of going outside or being alone
- Feelings of resentment, anger or irritability towards your children and/or partner
- Appetite changes
- Insomnia or excessive sleep
- Suicidal thoughts or a desire to run away
- A lack of interest in activities
If you are suffering from any of the above feelings or conditions listed above, it’s vital to confide in either your loved ones or mental health professional. As a result, you will receive the support you need during this new phase of your life.