BABY BLUES & BABY PINKS

postpartum mental health

 POSTPARTUM MENTAL HEALTH 

 

Day 3 postpartum is usually when the adrenalin and the excitement of the birth starts to wear off and exhaustion sets in. Plus, your hormones are changing to bring in the mature milk. 

 

This is the perfect recipe for some tears. Let yourself be emotional, it is normal.

 

 

 BABY BLUES 

The early postpartum days can feel like a roller coaster, periods of lows followed by a surge of energy and then another low.

 

Ride through it and know you adjusting to a major life style change. These baby blues are normal for the first two weeks, after that we hope each day feels more managEable. If you are feeling overwhelmed and crying often after two weeks  reach out for support and talk to a counsellor. Keep in mind woman are at an increased risk of depression or anxiety for a year after having a baby.

Mental health and sleep are connected, if you notice your mood is slipping the first step is to get more sleep. Make the decision to pump during the day to have breast milk and protect your supply or commit to a formula. You have to take care of yourself in order to be a good parent. Eating regular healthy meals, gentle walks, and calling a friend are other ways to promote mental health.

 

 BABY PINKS 

Alternatively, some people experience the baby pinks. 

We often simply mental health to just emotions - you're happy, then you're fine! But mental health is not so simple.

Baby pinks is where you continue riding an adrenaline high. You might be feeling very joyful, highly excited, and overall in a great mood. This is awesome!

 

Be mindful that you might also be hyper-energetic, hyper-active, and may be accidentally over-exerting yourself.  This can lead to doing too much, sleeping too little, and over time transform into anxious energy. 

Remind yourself to take it slow, rest, and take some deep meditative breaths when you find your emotional surges running away from you. 

 

Making a Self-care List

I encourage you to make a list of 5 self care activities and aim to incorporate at least one activity a week. Think about incorporating mindfulness into your daily routine. 

 

For example, while taking a shower take in the heat and the smells, be present and not carried away thinking about whats to come in your day or what has already happened. Let the water hit your neck as you stretch it side to side. Clear your mind is tuning into your 5 senses, a new focus point for your mind will calm the chatter.

 SELF-CARE LIST EXAMPLE 

 

⦁    Bath, light a candle

⦁    Ordering in food + watching a movie

⦁    Get a massage

⦁    Getting extra sleep

⦁    Stretching

Check in on your partner, debrief the birth experience, discuss how you are feeling with the new responsibility. Sometimes its hard to recognize signs depression in ourselves but loved ones can speak up if they notice concerning changes.

 SIGNS OF POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION 

  • Loss in appetite or excessive eating

  • Restless or only wanting to sleep

  • Loss of interest in hobbies, not looking forward to anything

  • Withdrawing from friends and family

  • Not wanting to be alone with the baby, lack of bonding with the baby

  • Irritated, outbursts of anger

  • High level of anxiety and worrying (eg. not sleeping to watch over baby)

  • Persistent baby blues after 2 weeks postpartum

Having an open dialogue with your partner is important. 

 

Getting help sooner rather than later is always helpful.  If you ever experience a mental health crisis where you want to hurt your self or others please go to the emergency room at the hospital or look up a local crisis hot line.

A Friendly Note:

Every birther should walk away from their birth feeling like a superhuman.

Sometimes things don't go according to plan. Yet at times even when everything goes perfectly well, the sheer intensity and shock of birth can leave one feeling overwhelmed.

 

For these reasons, we offer special birth debriefing services in our Private Consultations. 

This is especially for anyone who feels that they have a had a traumatic experience, would like to debrief with a clarity of mind to gain more insight on their birth management, and to find closure and strength in their experience.