How to Take Care of Your Mental Health During Pregnancy

Taking care of your mental well-being during pregnancy is essential, yet it is often neglected. Most mothers associate joy and new beginnings with being pregnant. Nevertheless, the reality is that for many pregnant women suffer from stress, turbulence, and uncertainty. Pregnancy brings fears about finances, employment, and careers because so much is changing—your body, emotions, identity, and relationships. So it is obvious that during pregnancy, women frequently struggle with their mental health. However, during pregnancy, your body and your unborn children are the centres of attention, and mental health is not highlighted. As mental health is considered taboo and is not discussed during pregnancy. In reason to that, women who frequently experience mental health issues during pregnancy do not know how to handle themselves and how to deal with it. Therefore, in this article, we will talk about prenatal stress, anxiety, and depression and how to get support in your pregnancy. 

Common Mental Health Conditions Women Face During Pregnancy:

Stress and anxiety are probably the two issues that pregnant women struggle with the most. The causes of this stress could be varied. Especially if they are first-time parents, pregnant women frequently experience anxiety about impending parenthood. Additionally, they are concerned about their own and their child's health as well as their body image. Also are unsure of how having a new child will affect their lives, which adds up to their anxiety that, can lead to depression. 

Drastic Mental Drifts:

Although women frequently find themselves in difficult situations during pregnancy, the changes in mental health mood go beyond that. They also go through hormonal changes in their bodies due to pregnancy, which can amplify their feelings and impact their energy, sleep, and appetite. Pregnant women also encounter stress regarding their relationship with their partner. They are scared of how their partners will react when their body changes and how they will deal with the upcoming change in their life. As a matter of fact, men are also experiencing challenging feelings regarding pregnancy and the changes that will occur in their relationship. So, according to many observations, anxiety and depression are the two mental health conditions which doctors deal with most frequently.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder:

Additionally, pregnant women often deal with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) during pregnancy, which comprises symptoms like excessive habits such as intrusive thoughts. Many of the patients have a history of disorders, and a record of mental health issues raises one's risk of recurrence during pregnancy. Whether you have that history or not, mental health is of chief importance and should be discussed. In fact, for the sake of mental well-being, discuss it with a doctor or a counsellor at each prenatal visit.

Signs and Symptoms of Bad Mental Health:

Pregnant women who are going through the phase of anxiety and depression might face the following mood swings. 

  • Become more irritable than usual.
  • Facing sleeping disorders as having trouble sleeping. 
  • Difficulty concentrating or losing interest with sudden mood swings. 
  • Experience changes in your appetite, mainly suffering from "Dysgeusia."

So, you might think this is normal during pregnancy, but it can lead to extreme anxiety, which will later turn into depression. So, discuss these mood swings and feelings with your doctor for a piece of better advice and a cure for the initial stages of anxiety. Anxiety and depression during pregnancy are intense, long-lasting and can interrupt your ability to care for yourself or your child.

How to treat your Mental Health:

For sure, pregnant individuals should engage in an open discussion about both their physical and psychological well-being with their doctors. Also, pregnant women should have regular contact and check-ups with their doctor to avoid any sort of despair. If the doctor detects a worse situation, then they will recommend you a great therapist or a counsellor to treat things better for the pregnant couple. As they are mental health professionals and know how things work in such situations. However, there are certain habits that pregnant partners can incorporate into their lifestyle to manage anxiety, depression and mood swings.

  • Do yoga or a little exercise to enlighten up your mood—make sure that what exercises or yoga you do is preferred by a healthcare expert to avoid complications. (Otherwise, walk will do great.)
  • Get enough sleep to balance and soothe your moods.
  • You can better control your stress by meditating and practising mindfulness.
  • So that you may not dwell on your worries as much, keep a journal and name it your "worry diary," as that will help you with all your feelings. 
  • When it comes to managing pregnant mental health, some parents find yoga, massage, and acupuncture helpful; once again, be sure to get your doctor's approval before begin these.

To conclude, mental health care is of chief importance as it has lasting negative impacts on the mother as well as the child. So, instead of considering it a taboo, speak up, notice things, discuss with your partner and open up to your doctor. As this will help you in your mental well-being and will allow you to have a healthy pregnancy with a sound mind.