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6 Ways to Handle Postpartum Stress

postpartum stress

Being a new mother can be one of the most exciting times of a woman’s life, but it also comes with a lot of stress and new challenges. Learning how to handle postpartum stress can make those moments with your new baby much more enjoyable. Healthily coping with the stress of being a new parent will allow you to prioritize taking care of your baby and yourself.

Dealing With Postpartum Stress

It’s important to note that postpartum stress is extremely common for new mothers. Especially if this is your first child, your life suddenly becomes completely different from the one you knew before. It’s natural to feel stress while adjusting to your new normal. 

There are many triggers for postpartum stress, including managing multiple tasks, preparing to go back to work, exhaustion, finding self-care time, changes to your body, new elements to your relationship with your partner, and more. At Green Valley OBGYN, we aim to be a resource for women at all stages of their pregnancy. Here are six ways to handle postpartum stress:

  1. Don’t feel like you have to handle everything alone.

One of the first things to learn as a new mother is that it is okay to ask for help. Many mothers associate needing extra help with a form of failure as a parent, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. No one expects you to have all the answers immediately. 

Asking for help from your spouse or extended family and friends will give you a shoulder to lean on when you start to feel burnt out. This will also ensure that you don’t neglect your own self-care by trying to be supermom and taking on every task alone. 

  1. Eat healthy.

Finding time to take care of yourself can be difficult with your new parenting schedule, but eating healthy is the perfect way to incorporate self-care into your daily routine. In general, a healthy diet is a solid remedy to combat stress. For postpartum mothers, eating well can also help fight fatigue and constipation. Focus on getting complex carbs and protein in your diet to maintain energy. Also, be sure to incorporate foods with fiber, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, to prevent hemorrhoids. 

  1. Stay active.

Dr. Sherry Ross, OB/GYN and women’s health expert, states that “regular exercise can improve mental health, relieve stress, improve depression and anxiety, and help you sleep better.” Staying active doesn’t mean you have to attend a rigorous gym session daily. Going for a walk outside or doing an at-home workout is a quick, simple way to get moving and boost your heart rate. Exercising as a new mom is an excellent method to sweat out some of the postpartum stress you endure.

  1. Rest as much as you can.

It may sound like a simple solution, but finding time to rest and recover postpartum can be difficult. In order to avoid postpartum fatigue, you’ll want to rest as much as possible. Whenever your baby is sleeping, you should be sleeping as well. If your baby tends to be restless during the night, alternate with your partner on who will get up each night. 

  1. Be aware of the symptoms of postpartum depression.

Postpartum stress is different from postpartum depression. It’s important to be aware of signs of postpartum depression, so you don’t mistake one for the other. Postpartum stress is the adjustment to motherhood and life changes that occur after the birth of a baby. Postpartum depression involves more severe symptoms and feelings of worthlessness, loss of joy, and increased anxiety. If your postpartum stress goes unmanaged, it has the potential to lead to developing depression or anxiety. 

  1. Speak with your OB/GYN. 

Circling back to our first tip on handling postpartum stress, don’t be afraid to ask your OB/GYN for advice if you’re still struggling postpartum. Your physician is there to help with postpartum care for both you and your baby. 

Get in Touch With Us

Postpartum should ultimately be an enjoyable period of your life to soak up time with your new baby. However, becoming a new mom is not an easy adjustment. If you’re still looking for additional postpartum care tips, contact us at (336)378-1110 to manage postpartum stress.