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High number of new mums feels anxious and depressed following birth

Cover Media logo Cover Media 14/5/2019
© Provided by Cover Media Ltd

If you’ve recently had a baby and you’re feeling anxious and depressed then you’re not alone – a new study has found nearly 60 per cent of new mums under the age of 45 experience this.

For the research, conducted by a team from Orlando Health Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies in Florida, it was discovered that many new mothers do not prepare for postpartum care during what experts dub the 'fourth trimester’ of pregnancy.

Interestingly though, only 31 per cent of mums over 45 reported feeling anxious and/or depressed after welcoming their little one.

“You may feel out of control, and you are. Not every woman is able to breastfeed,” the hospital’s Dr Megan Gray explained. “Your baby may not sleep at exactly the same time every day or drink the exact same amount of milk at each feeding, and that's okay.”

Further results found 37 per cent of mums felt embarrassed by what their body was going through after birth, and 63 per cent said they were equally concerned with their health as they were with their baby's health, yet 26 per cent did not have a good plan for their own health management after delivery, a number that jumps to 37 per cent among 18 to 34-year-olds.

“Just talking through some of the things they're going through can help women realise that they're not alone and that what they're feeling is okay. Asking for help will ultimately make you a better mom,” Dr Gray encouraged.

“The fourth trimester can be difficult and overwhelming for women as their bodies go through physical and emotional changes, and this time deserves the same support and attention as the first three trimesters. Seeing your doctor within a few weeks of delivery and sharing any concerns is critical to getting the care and treatment you need.”

Advice in America regarding new mums seeing their doctor was changed last year, with women recommended to check in three weeks after giving birth, rather than waiting the traditional six weeks.

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