Today sees the launch of the third Maternal Mental Health Matters Week, led by Perinatal Mental Health Partnership UK. This week-long campaign is dedicated to talking about mental illness during pregnancy or after having a baby and signposting support for all mums. This year’s theme is Mums Matter.
At Tommy’s we know that pregnancy can be emotionally challenging. It can be difficult to accept that you’re feeling low at a time when people expect you to feel happy and excited. But try to remember that mental health problems in pregnancy, such as depression or anxiety are common so you’re not alone. If your feelings do not go away, it could be a sign of something more serious. Tell your midwife or GP how you feel. This can help you find the right treatment and support.
There are things you can do to cope with anxiety and stress. Many women find that it helps to talk to someone they trust about what’s bothering them. Talking to people about how you feel can be a huge relief and help remind you that you’re not alone. Some women use online pregnancy forums. You’ll probably find that other people are having similar experiences and you may get some good ideas about how to deal with any problems.
Support is available
It’s important to get support sooner rather than later. As well as talking to your midwife or your GP, there are many organisations out there who can help, such as PANDAS, Mind and APNI (Association for Postnatal Illness)
Get involved with Maternal Mental Health Matters Awareness Week
Here’s how you can show your support or help raise awareness:
Visit the Perinatal Mental Health Partnership on Facebook.There are online and live events happening all over the country this week.
Find out each day's theme on the Maternal Mental Health Alliance website
Join the conversation by using #maternalmhmatters on Twitter and Facebook. Search the hashtag to see what supporters are saying.