As an expectant mom, you will find many resources for what to expect up until the birth of your baby. There is ample literature about the development of your little one, but one still glaring hole in the resources for new moms is what happens to your mind and body post-birth.
Postpartum blues and anxiety can sadly still be stigmatized and overlooked, despite how common it is among new mothers. Did you know baby blues is reported in 75% of new mothers, and postpartum depression is reported in 10-20% of women? We collectively need to take a step towards both normalizing and creating a circle of support for our mothers' postpartum mental health.
Here are 3 postpartum wellness tips for new moms to stay well during this often tumultuous time:
1. Create a Support Circle
In your first few weeks post-birth, much of your time and energy will go towards your new baby, and often all of your other daily tasks and chores fall to the wayside. Every new mom can feel inundated with both the demands of a newborn and household management, and this may take a toll on their mental well-being.
Before your due date, take time to consider who you want in your support circle. Your support circle should include “helpers” and “listeners”, those who can aid in daily tasks, and those you know will provide an ear and emotional support without judgement. Your circle may be comprised of two or ten loved ones, but no matter the number, knowing you have a team behind you can be the greatest relief. Remember, seeking mental health support and finding a trusted therapist before your due date is always a sign of strength!
2. Feed the Body
Keeping a stock of pre-prepared nutrient-rich, whole foods, and remembering all three meals and snacks will help your body recover and strengthen post-partum. Incorporate fruits, leafy greens and whole grains in your diet, as well as supplements, to restore your energy. Feeding the body well has a tremendous impact on both your energy levels and mental wellness!
From your pre-baby exercise routine to a short walk around the block, taking any time for exercise can boost both your energy and mood! Create a schedule that allows just 20 minutes of movement a day. If you skip and day and break that schedule, don’t sweat it! Just try again tomorrow.
Remember to sleep each and every time your baby sleeps. Prioritize any chance to allow your body to restore and recover energy.
Getting a shower in can feel near impossible some days, but self-care is a massive component of wellness! Take time to give yourself some love, be it a 15-minute face mask or a full mani/pedi while your little one naps. We can help! Schedule some pampering mobile spa services with BeautyDel. Enjoy relaxing facials, massages, and pedicures from the comfort of your home. We would love to be a part of your mental health support team by reminding you that you are fabulous, beautiful, and deserving of time just for you!
Feed the Mind
Talk it Through
Whether it be your designated “listener” or a therapist, set a time daily to share some of the feelings and worries you are facing each day. Taking time to express the stir of emotions you may be experiencing, and receiving the reminder that those emotions are not only valid but common can be the greatest catharsis!
If you don’t have any breathing or meditation techniques on your roster, start now! The benefits of meditation are staggering and there are many types of meditation to test until you find the perfect fit for you.
Breathing techniques are a great start in your meditation journey, and one that we find very effective is the 4/4/8 count. When you are feeling overwhelmed or anxious, breathe in slowly for a count of 4, hold for a count of 4, and breathe out for a count of 8. Mindful breathing can even your heart rate, lower your blood pressure, reduce your anxiety, and wipe your mind of all its worries.
Above all, be kind to yourself. Adding extra pressure or creating too high an expectation for yourself can be harmful. Accept you will not be at your best every moment of every day. Give yourself the grace of self-understanding. Keep in mind that between the many happy posts, all new mothers are experiencing very similar emotions and trials as you. No matter where you are in your journey, you are doing great mom, we applaud you!