Updated: Jun 14
Traditionally the preparation for pregnancy, childbirth, and parenthood has focused on the physical aspects - vitamins, nutrition, exercise, breastfeeding, and baby care.
But it is just as important to prepare for the mental and emotional impacts of pregnancy, childbirth, and parenthood. As recommended by EmmaWell's maternal coaches, here are 4 steps you can take to mentally prepare yourself for having a baby:
1. Be aware of the risk factors, signs, and symptoms of mental health conditions that can happen during the pregnancy and the postpartum period. If you are at risk, then you can take steps to prevent or reduce your risk. If you are able to recognize when you’re having signs or symptoms, then you can reach out to your health care provider for treatment which can include self-care, psychotherapy, medication, and/or support groups.
2. Learn what to expect during pregnancy, labor, and delivery as well as common issues experienced during the postpartum period. It is impossible to predict what your pregnancy and postpartum experience will be like. Learning what to expect will help you mentally accept that you won’t be able to know, predict, or control everything - and that’s ok.
3. Create a strong circle of support. It is critical to having social support during your pregnancy and after giving birth from your partner, parents, family, and friends. Social support is believed to reduce stress and anxiety as well as improve your ability to cope with any challenges you might experience.
4. Recognize that your emotional health is just as important as your physical health during pregnancy. Pregnancy and new parenthood is a major life transition for most people. Studies have shown that emotional stress during pregnancy can lead to negative outcomes for both mom and baby. So prioritize your mental well-being to prepare for a happy and healthy pregnancy and parenthood experience.
With Warmth and Wellness,
Your EmmaWell Team