Survival tips for a new mum
Nothing can prepare you for this life changing moment, it's supposed to be the most magical time of your life, but it’s also the most challenging and demanding. The majority of first-time mums will admit that they find it extremely difficult adjusting to their new role, so if you are too you're not alone.
Every mum will experience baby blues and this is totally normal and will usually last up to two weeks after giving birth. However, 1 in 10 women in the UK within a year of giving birth are affected by PND (postnatal depression) it can start at any time in the first year and this is totally different to baby blues.
Symptoms include low moods, loss of energy, difficulty bonding with your baby, becoming unsocial and general loss of interest in your life.
The main type of treatment for postnatal depression is psychological therapy, however, there are lots of things you can do to help yourself, as I explain more in this article.
8 'survival tips' for new mums
1. Ask for help
Remember it’s totally normal to be not OK. Make sure you ask for help especially in the early days, whether it’s help with your baby, cleaning, cooking or any other day to day task. Don’t give yourself too much to do or put pressure on yourself to get things done. Remember your only real job is to look after the baby and of course yourself.
This is totally normal don’t be hard on yourself, your whole life has just changed obviously for the better, but it’s tiring and hard and it’s OK to cry even in front of the baby. Eventually, the tough tears will turn into happy tears. Being hard on yourself or feeling guilty will only increase your anxiety levels, stop this straight away, it can be a slippery slope.
This can be difficult with a new baby, but do not isolate yourself. Whether it's meeting up with family, friends or maybe attending a baby class, human contact makes us happy. (A baby class is a great way to meet new mums).
This is so important. “Sleep when the baby sleeps” is a phrase you're probably fed up of hearing. Sleep is so important especially in the early stages, your new baby’s sleeping patterns are so unpredictable and you as a new mum need all the energy you can get. Lack of sleep will interfere with your REM sleep (rapid eye movement) if you lack this you will automatically feel more anxious and this can lead to feeling irritable and low moods.
5. Don’t compare
This is negative. Do what’s best for you and your baby, everyone has a different life. You know what works for you, your lifestyle and your new family so don’t compare yourself to any other mums.
Take time to bond with your baby, whether it’s at home or a baby class, Make time for just you and baby. This is something most new mums wish they would have done more of when looking back.
Any type of exercise will make you feel better about yourself. When we exercise we release a hormone called serotonin and this hormone makes us humans feel happy. So whether it’s power walking, weights or going to a gym class, get your heart pumping. Exercise is a natural anti-depressant.
8. Make time for you
This is the biggest challenge when you become a mum. At least once a week schedule an hour or two personal time, during this time do something for yourself whatever you enjoy doing. This will help massively reduce your risk of postnatal depression.
Hypnotherapy pre or post birth of a baby can not only help you mentally but help you take control of your thoughts, worries and anxiety around the up and coming birth of your baby or adjusting to your new life as a mum.
Having a baby has been the hardest most overwhelming chapters of my life, being a hypnotherapist has really helped me cope with this change myself, giving myself and my family a happy, positive life.
If you're struggling with anxiety about your up and coming birth or having low moods after the birth of your baby, hypnotherapy will help you get your life on track and put you in the right mindset so you can cope with motherhood and feel positive about your future.
Remember happy mum means a happy baby!
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About Gemma Gibbons
I hold a diploma in solution-focused hypnotherapy (DSFH) from CPHT Manchester and HPD (Hypnotherapy Practitioners Diploma) from the National Council for Hypnotherapy (NCH) I offer treatments for a variety of anxiety related disorders, hypno-birthing, fertility issues and smoking cessation.… Read more
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