The excitement of becoming a mother cannot be measured. However, even though it’s one of the most joyful experiences, it comes with challenges. From taking care of your newborn to maintaining your peace. Demands are coming from all ways, and it’s easy to feel stressed under increased anxiety and pressure.
In addition, as if outside pressure isn’t enough, there might be things you do that affect your mental health more. Becoming a mom means you not only have to monitor your heart rate and blood pressure but keep an eye on your baby and ensure they are growing healthy. As a result, the role of a new mom might feel unmanageable, hectic, and overwhelming, making you doubt yourself.
Not sure how to maintain your mental health? Take a look at these valuable tips to protect your mental health while making your transition into motherhood easier.
Stay in touch with your doctor
One of the best ways to maintain your mental health is to communicate openly with your doctor. These experts can help you get all the assistance you need. Not just that, your doctor might suggest you talk to a therapist if you need additional help.
However, this isn’t the only way your doctor can help you improve your mental health. Besides examining you, they can check your newborn to ensure they’re healthy and strong. They can help you detect health conditions or diseases beforehand and outline all the possible treatments. For instance, your medical care provider can help you detect serious health conditions like cerebral palsy earlier. Once the diagnosis is reached, you can start looking for cerebral palsy attorneys to help get justice and the financial support you deserve.
Reduce your social media usage
Those days and nights of endless feedings and pacing the halls trying to calm your day set the perfect environment for losing yourself in social media. Before you even know it, the little one is asleep in your arms while you’re still scrolling Instagram. Even though social media fills an essential need for new moms, providing you support no matter the time can also negatively affect them.
Relying too much on social media can make it look like in-person support isn’t needed. While the convenience of online communication can make it simpler to reach out for help, it’s vital to have face-to-face conversations. Besides decreasing real-life interactions, social media might expose you to harsh and disapproving behavior. For instance, reactions to a post about tips for how to help your baby sleep are usually filled with criticisms of how the poster handles their child.
Hence, consider having a friend over for a playdate instead of using social media. You can ask your mother to tag along while running errands, helping you have face-to-face interactions, and maintaining your mental health.
Maintain healthy habits
Many studies show that parents lose an average of seven months of sleep during a newborn’s first two years. This might probably not be a surprise to you. Not getting enough sleep can often lead to mental health conditions like anxiety or depression, including feeling overwhelmed or irritable. Hence, try getting quality sleep. Consider creating a calm bedtime routine to help you relax before going to sleep. Besides that, avoid caffeine, sleep, or alcohol before going to sleep.
Besides that, you must understand that foods and drinks impact your mood, body, and brain for good or bad. As a result, you need to eat a balanced and nutritious diet to keep yourself mentally healthy. So, what should you add to your plate? Try having plant-based foods like beans to help your body absorb glucose. Add fermented foods like kimchi into your diet.
Change your to-do list
Undoubtedly, the to-do list can be your best friend. With o much to do and so much to swirl around in your mind, mixed with days of sleep deprivation, it can be pretty easy to forget tasks. However, a traditional to-do list isn’t the best fit for new moms like you. For instance, on Wednesday, your old to-do lists might have duties assigned to specific days, such as grocery store, laundry, and post office.
However, as you enter a new mom’s life, you’ll realize that it’s not predictable enough to decide beforehand how much you can approximately get done in a day. A clingy baby or rough night can instantly turn your list into a reminder of how much you didn’t do today. This not only causes frustration and feelings of failure but unwanted stress.
So, what should you do instead? Start by changing your concept of the to-do list. Rather than having one list that includes everything, break it into two:
- A list that consists of daily required chores. Include tasks that must get done on a particular day, such as taking the dog to vet
- The other one should be a prioritized list of other tasks that have to be done but have flexibility on when they happen
This makes your to-do list more flexible and lines up with the reality of the day instead of being fixed, causing stress when things don’t get done on time.
Ask for and accept help
Remember, you don’t have to do everything yourself. Everyone needs help, and there isn’t anything shameful about asking. In fact, being a mother is more fun when you have someone to help. So, what help can you put in place? Consider hiring a cleaning service, a nanny, or a meal delivery service every other week.
Moreover, when someone offers to help, accept it. For instance, if your friend offers to set up a meal train for you, instead of hesitating, say yes. Make sure you’re speaking up for whatever you need because you can’t do everything yourself, and you’re not supposed to!
Invest in Your Self-Care
Self-care is vital for your mental health. However, self-care doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend hours at the parlor or several days at the gym to enjoy more holistic wellness. Instead, consider spending a few moments every day doing something you like.
During the new mom phase, doing little things can make you energized. Try taking a night bath after your baby goes to sleep to relax. Go for a massage once a week to keep yourself mentally healthy. Besides that, you can care for yourself by doing yoga or writing in a journal. Look for a facial mask when your newborn is asleep, treat yourself with a hot cup of coffee, or paint your nails when you’re free.
To take proper care of your newborn, you need to prioritize your mental health. With the tips mentioned above, you can easily maintain your mental health and boost your overall well-being.