Many new moms battle postpartum depression, but there's something else to be on the lookout for: postpartum anxiety. You might not feel sad or depressed, but might find yourself constantly worrying and fretting about your baby. If it's your first baby, you might be especially anxious. We have 10 tips to help you deal with new mom anxiety.
10 Don't Sweat The Small Stuff
Don't worry about what the house looks like or how much laundry is piling up. You've got to focus on taking care of yourself and your baby. The laundry can sit in the dryer a few more hours, and the dishes can sit in the sink. Instead of using your free time to do chores, relax and spend time with your partner and family. Bond with your baby. Enjoy this time together.
9 Accept Help
Of course, if it really bugs you that the dishes aren't done and the fridge is empty, ask someone to help you out. Lots of well-meaning friends and family will ask you if you need anything, so take them up on their offer. Ask someone to bring you lunch, run to the grocery store, or even just come and sit with the baby for half an hour so you can take a shower! If it's in the budget, maybe splurge and hire a cleaning company to do a really deep clean of your house.
8 Get Your Rest
You've probably heard "sleep when the baby sleeps" a million times already, but it's important to get your rest. When you first bring your baby home, you'll be in a cycle where the baby will wake and need to feed every few hours. You might want to use baby's nap times to get other things done, but it's important that you (and your partner) rest up as much as possible. Caring for a baby is an around the clock job.
7 Get Out and About
Don't be afraid to take your newborn out and about. Especially when babies are newborns, they tend to sleep a lot, so there's no reason why you and your partner can't go out to dinner. If timed just right, baby may end up sleeping through the whole meal. And when you're comfortable leaving the baby at home with a trusted friend or family member, there's absolutely nothing wrong with getting out for a little date night with your partner.
6 Take Time For Yourself
You don't have to do it all. Make sure that you have time to recharge. If you want to take a long bath, get a pedicure, or just walk around the mall to be by yourself with a cup of coffee for an hour, do it. It's important to remember that you're still you, even though you're now a mom. Continue to do the things you love, so that you don't feel burdened by all of your new responsibilities.
5 Meet Other Moms
It can be helpful to find someone in the same situation you're in. Look for local mom groups online, scout out baby playdates in your area, and try to make some new friends. It will be nice to have someone with so much in common, and it's always great to meet new people!
4 Eat Right
You might find yourself slurping down coffee and cereal because it's fast and easy, but make sure to stick to a well-balanced diet. Also, adding foods to your diet that will help reduce anxiety. Foods like chamomile tea, eggs, and salmon are all known to have anxiety-fighting properties.
Even if the last thing on your mind is exercise, it might help to get out and get some fresh air. Put the baby in the stroller and go for a long, leisurely walk. Listen to music or talk to the baby. After a while, your daily walks will become part of your routine, and they won't even feel like exercise!
2 Get Help
It's natural to worry with a new baby at home. Not only that, but being tired, recuperating from childbirth, and all of the hormonal changes in your body after pregnancy are bound to make you feel a little out of sorts. If you're concerned that your feelings are more irrational, and they are disrupting your sleep or preventing you from caring for yourself and your baby properly, mention your concerns to your doctor immediately.
1 Trust Your Instincts
As a new mom, you will have a lot of questions, and at times may even doubt your ability to take care of your baby. At some point, every parent worries they're not doing things right. But, as a mom, your instincts will kick in. No matter what, you will make sure your baby is well-fed and well-rested. Remember to rely on your partner; you're a team. You're doing your best, and you and your baby will be just fine.