7 Things You Can Do To Manage Emotional Well-Being During Pregnancy

7 Things You Can Do To Manage Emotional Well-Being During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a beautiful journey. Whether you are a new parent or have already experienced parenthood before, this journey looks different every time. While this journey has many ups – the joy of pregnancy, the care and support you receive from your loved ones, and the thought of having your very own little one in your arms at the end of this journey – it also has its downs – mood swings, nausea, aches and pains, emotional distress, anxiety and worries and much more.

While your doctors may be focused on your physical health and making sure you eat right, take your supplements and maintain good habits during your pregnancy, it is also of utmost importance that you prioritize your emotional well-being as well.

When you focus on your emotional well-being during pregnancy, it helps you develop a strong emotional connection with your baby. A study has indicated that the pregnant parent’s mood disorders and anxiety can predict higher behavioral and emotional challenges for the child, and these do not reduce or decrease even upto adolescence. Anxiety or mood disorders during pregnancy was also associated with a two-fold increase in risk of a probable mental disorder in the child.

Studies have also found that stress hormones in the parent can impact the baby. Such babies are likely to be hyperactive, born prematurely, have low birth-weight and are irritable and fussy during early childhood. The babies may find it hard to bond with the new mom and may take longer to feel calm when they are agitated.

If you want to take care of your mental health and emotional well-being, but don’t know where to start, keep reading because we’ve got the perfect guide for you.

Here are 7 things you can start doing today to manage your emotional well-being during pregnancy.

1.  Start Journaling

Journaling is simply the act of writing down your thoughts, feelings and experiences to help yourself understand them more clearly. And if you struggle with mood disorders like depression, or stress and anxiety during pregnancy, keeping a journal can help you gain control of your emotions and improve your mental health. If you’re not sure what to write in your journal, having a guided journal with prompts and ideas can be beneficial. These journals give you an idea of what to write. Along with that, they also help you introspect, give you coping tools to manage negative thoughts and emotions and can help enhance your well-being.

2.  Practice Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the ability that allows you to be fully present in the moment, aware of where you are and what you are doing, without any judgment. Mindfulness is known to improve pregnancy outcomes, reduce aches and pains during pregnancy and labour, and help new moms enhance their emotional bond with their baby. While sometimes it can be difficult to know where to start with mindfulness, the AtEase Mindfulness Pregnancy Program can help you with guidance on how to incorporate mindfulness in your daily life with the help of an expert. This program can help you build a regular practice of mindfulness which can further improve your relationship and emotional connect with your baby.

3.  Engage in hobbies

Often, many new parents can lose their identity during pregnancy and early days of parenthood. The health and well-being of their child becomes their only priority and even their own needs, desires and wants may take a backseat. However, this is not good for your mental health. Take time out during your day to engage in activities you enjoy. This can include gardening, reading, writing, music, dance, sewing, cooking, painting,exercising, doing yoga or anything else that brings your joy. Remember, when you take care of yourself, you are in a better position to take care of your baby.

4.  Nurture Your Relationships with Loved Ones

When you become a new mom, it’s possible that your child takes up most of your time and energy. During the early days of parenthood, it can be difficult to find time for the people you love. Even when you do interact, they may be more focused on your new baby than on you. Take the time to enhance your relationships with those you love during pregnancy, so that the relationship can weather the changes that come after you have a baby. Spend time with those you love, have meals together, talk about old memories, go on a trip together, and take several pictures to remember this time. You can nurture your relationship with your friends, parents, in-laws, and even with your partner. After all, y’all are in the parenthood journey together.

5.  Find Social Support

Having friends and loved ones who are close to you is great. But sometimes, they may not realize what it is that you are going through. Every pregnancy is different, and they may not be able to empathize with your struggles, or understand your fears. During pregnancy, it’s important for a new mom’s mental health to have people who understand and validate their struggles without any judgment. A support group gives you just that space. It allows you to come together with other to-be moms and parents regularly, with time and a safe space to share your thoughts, feelings and experiences in a confidential and non-judgmental space. It also allows you to learn from the trials and challenges of other moms experiencing pregnancy and parenthood at the same time as you.

6.  Keep a Check on Your Mental Health

Your mental health is important for a smooth pregnancy and to help your baby’s development. One way to keep track of your mental health and well-being is by checking or screening yourself for signs of emotional distress during pregnancy. Taking a specific mental health screening meant for pregnant individuals and new moms like this can help you understand your current emotional state. They say knowledge is power, and that’s true. It is only when you know your emotional state, that you can work towards taking better care of it. Understanding your current emotional state and your mental health stressors is one of the first and most important steps in achieving emotional well-being.

7.  Seek Professional Guidance

A new mom’s mental health and emotional well-being is of utmost important during pregnancy. If you feel like you are struggling to manage your emotions, or that your mental health is not as good as it should be, don’t hesitate in reaching out for support from a mental health expert. Be it a therapist or psychiatrist, having an expert can help you manage your mental well-being. A therapist can listen to your concerns and help you find tools and techniques to manage them on a daily basis. They can also help you manage and overcome your worries about being a new parent, and can help you become your best self. A psychiatrist can look at your concerns from a medical lens and help you find the best way to take care of yourself. Sometimes, your mental health may be alright, but the relationship dynamics with your partner may be changing. This is understandable, as a new baby can impact your relationship with your partner. Speaking to a couples counselor can help you and your partner discuss any issues or concerns that arise and help to nurture the relationship you share with each other.

Remember, that while pregnancy can be difficult from time to time, you aren’t in this alone. There are many people who struggle with pregnancy every day. Having a baby is a big responsibility, and taking care of your emotional well-being during this time is helpful as it ensures the well-being, emotional connect, and healthy development of your baby.

As you go through this journey of motherhood and parenthood, AtEase can offer you support to enhance your well-being. See how we can help, and don’t hesitate to reach out to us for your support.

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