During your pregnancy, you probably couldn’t wait to finally meet your baby. You might have checked a countdown calendar every day, waiting for the moment when you could hold your child in your arms for the first time.
New moms experience a period of exhausted bliss in the first few days or weeks after they give birth. Bonding with your baby is an indescribable experience, but it can also result in feelings that women might be embarrassed to talk about.
Stress isn’t frequently discussed because new moms feel pressured to only be happy and grateful. In reality, postpartum anxiety is a real thing that many women deal with, and there are easy ways to combat it.
Check out these five ways to alleviate stress as a new parent. Soon you’ll be back to your normal self and regain a sense of control over your life.
1. Make Time for Yourself
Babies are a full-time responsibility, especially in those first few months after you get home from the hospital. You’re up every few hours to feed, wash and clothe your infant, all while comforting them in your arms. It can end up making you feel like your baby has become a permanent attachment when all you want is five minutes alone.
It’s so important for new moms to make time for themselves. If you can’t ask someone to baby-sit for you, leave your baby in a crib in a separate room and let them cry while you read or take a bath for 15 minutes. Studies have proven that it’s healthy to allow babies to cry when they’re alone in their crib. They end up falling asleep faster as they get older, and it causes no mental or emotional damage to them as infants.
2. Talk Things Out
Another challenging aspect of taking care of your baby is that you may be alone with them all day, every day. The lack of socialization adds to your stress, so talk things out with your partner or a friend.
Tell them how you honestly feel, what’s bothering you and how they can help. Even if it’s just a 10-minute phone call at lunch, you’ll feel less stress as a new parent once you’ve talked out how you feel with someone who can respond to you.
3. Visit With Friends
As much as you can, spend time with friends once you’re comfortable with leaving the house for extended periods of time. Invite them on walks with you and your baby or drive to their home.
Whether you visit with friends in person or over video chat, you will lower your overall stress level and be able to relax when you get back home.
4. Practice Deep Breathing
The body can hold onto stress as tension without you even realizing it. A good way to let go of this stress as a new parent is to practice deep breathing exercises whenever you feel like anxiety is overwhelming you.
Belly breathing is easy to practice and only takes a few minutes. Lie down on the floor wherever your baby is to inhale peace and exhale your stress.
5. Ask for Help
Moms are superheroes, but no one expects you to do motherhood alone. Don’t forget to ask for help if you feel like you need it. The people who love you will want to jump in whenever and wherever they can.
That’s what friends and family are for, both before and after you become a mom.
Listen to Your Body
Try these stress-alleviating tips to make your daily life a little easier. Whether you visit with friends or do some deep breathing in your living room, remember to listen to your body.
Your stress as a new parent may come from certain things, like not getting enough sleep or eating junk food. Pay attention to what your body needs to get to the root of your troubles and go back to enjoying motherhood.
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