Memorial Hermann - A New Beginning

Emotional Changes

Transitioning into parenthood is a major life adjustment. In the span of moments, your emotions can range from amazement to excitement to fear. It may take some time for emotions to return to normal. New fathers or partners may also experience emotional highs and lows. Be patient with yourself and with each other. Reach out for support if you need it. BABY BLUES About 70-80% of new parents experience some negative feelings or mood swings that can start a few days after the birth. “Baby blues” are common and usually last from a few days up to a few weeks. These feelings are likely related to changing hormones and fatigue.

Common symptoms of baby blues can include: • Weepiness • Impatience • Irritability • Restlessness • Anxiety • Feeling tired • Insomnia • Sadness • Mood changes • Poor concentration

If you or your family feels your symptoms are more severe or have lasted longer than 2 weeks, contact your health care provider. There are plenty of treatment options if you need some help getting back on your feet. Tips for dealing with baby blues: • Don’t skimp on sleep and rest when you can • Get out in nature and soak up some sunshine • Get moving—walk or dance to your favorite music • Keep doing the things you love • Carve out time for your partner or a support person • Reach out for peer support—in your community or online • Make up your mind to meditate or journal • Make time just for you—try a bath, aromatherapy, or massage POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY About 1 in 7 new parents will experience moderate to severe symptoms of depression or anxiety after the birth of their baby. Symptoms of maternal postpartum depression (PPD) usually appear in the first 3 months. But they can happen any time during the first year. Many of the symptoms are similar to the baby blues. The difference is that symptoms of PPD and anxiety may : • Be felt more intensely • Last most of the day • Happen on more days than not • Make it hard to function

• Affect your ability to care for your baby • Change your feelings toward your baby

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Your Guide to Postpartum and Newborn Care

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