You may feel excited, exhausted, overwhelmed, and even sad at times.
Taking care of a baby is a lot to think about and a lot to do.
On top of all that, after the birth of your baby, your hormones are adjusting again.
As a result, these changes can have an effect on your emotions and how you feel.
Here are few suggestion that may help you:
- Tell your partner how you feel. Let your partner help take care of the baby.
- Ask your friends and family for help. Tell them exactly what they can do for you, like go grocery shopping or make meals.
- Try to get as much rest as you can. We know it’s easier said than done, but try to sleep when your baby is sleeping.
- Try to make time for yourself. If possible, get out the house every day, even if it’s for a short while.
- Eat healthy foods and be active when you can (with your health care provider’s ok). Eating healthy and getting fit can help you feel better.
- Don’t drink alcohol, smoke or use drugs. All these things are bad for you and can make it hard for you to handle stress.
If you experience changes in your feelings, in your everyday life, and in how you think about yourself or your baby that last longer than 2 weeks, call your health care provider right away. These could be signs of postpartum depression.
How do you know if you have postpartum depression?
Postpartum depression (also called PPD) is different from having emotional changes. PPD happens when the feelings of sadness are strong and last for a long time after the baby is born. These feelings can make it hard for you to take care of your baby. You may have PPD if you have five or more signs of PPD that last longer than 2 weeks. These are the signs to look for:
Changes in your feelings:
• Feeling depressed most of the day every day
• Feeling shame, guilt or like a failure
• Feeling panicky or scared a lot of the time
• Having severe mood swings
Changes in your everyday life:
• Having little interest in things you normally like to do
• Feeling tired all the time
• Eating a lot more or a lot less than is normal for you
• Gaining or losing weight
• Having trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
• Having trouble concentrating or making decisions
Changes in how you think about yourself or your baby:
• Having trouble bonding with your baby
• Thinking about hurting yourself or your baby
• Thinking about killing yourself
If you think you may have PPD, call your health care provider right away. There are things you and your provider can do to help you feel better. If you’re worried about hurting yourself or your baby, call emergency services at 911.