A pregnant women looks up into the sky. Pregnancy is a time of great joy and anticipation, but it can also bring about a range of emotions and challenges. For many pregnant people, it can also be a time of increased anxiety and stress, which can have a significant impact on their mental health. 

In fact, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) study, 20% of pregnant people experience antenatal anxiety during pregnancy. Depression during pregnancy was also found to be incredibly common, with 1 in 10 people experiencing postpartum depression, as found by the National Health Service (NHS). Maternal mental health is incredibly important to both the well-being of the parent and the baby and is a crucial part of taking care of yourself at this delicate time.

Seek Support

During the crucial time of pregnancy, it is vital for women to prioritize their mental well-being by actively seeking out support from various sources. This support can be found through open and honest communication with a partner, family members, close friends or even a professional therapist. Building a strong support system is essential in order to effectively cope with the emotional challenges that often accompany the journey of pregnancy. It is imperative for pregnant people to recognize their own limits and reach out for assistance when feeling overwhelmed or anxious, as seeking help is a sign of strength and self-care.

Practice Self-Care

Pregnancy is a delicate and challenging time for women, as it can bring about physical discomfort and emotional turmoil. In order to navigate this period smoothly, it is imperative to prioritize self-care. This involves not only ensuring that you get plenty of rest and consume nutritious meals, but also engaging in activities that lift your spirits and provide you with relaxation. Additionally, it is crucial to establish boundaries and decline any requests or commitments that could potentially lead to heightened levels of stress. It is essential to understand that taking care of oneself during this time is not a selfish act, but rather a vital component in safeguarding both your own well-being and that of your unborn child.

Educate Yourself

Having knowledge about your mental health during pregnancy can be empowering and beneficial for both you and your baby. By taking the time to educate yourself on the physical and emotional changes that come with pregnancy, you can better understand what to expect and how to cope with any challenges that may arise. Utilizing various resources, including books, online articles and support groups, can offer a wealth of information and guidance to help you navigate this important time in your life. This knowledge can ultimately help you feel more confident and in control as you prepare for the journey ahead.

Stay Active

Exercise has been shown to have a positive impact on mental health, and this holds true during pregnancy as well. Of course, it’s important to consult with your doctor before starting any exercise routine, as different stages of pregnancy create different strains on the body. Staying active can help reduce stress and anxiety, improve mood and promote better sleep. Activities such as prenatal yoga, swimming and walking are great options for pregnant people looking to manage their mental health through movement.

Communicate with Your Healthcare Provider

Remember that your healthcare provider is not just a medical professional, but also a source of support and guidance for you and your baby’s well-being. It is important to openly communicate any worries or inquiries you may have, as they are equipped with the knowledge and resources to address your concerns. In addition to offering valuable advice, they can also offer referrals to therapists or support groups that specialize in mental health during pregnancy, ensuring that you receive the necessary help and support.

Be Kind to Yourself

Pregnancy can be a tumultuous journey filled with a wide range of emotions, both high and low. It’s crucial to practice self-compassion and avoid placing unrealistic expectations on yourself. Allow yourself the space to fully experience your emotions without judgment, knowing that it’s completely normal to not feel your best every moment of the day. It’s important to remind yourself that you are engaging in the extraordinary task of nurturing a new life within you, which is nothing short of remarkable.

In order to prioritize your mental well-being throughout your pregnancy, it’s vital to take care of your mental health. Bellaire is proud to offer women’s wellness mental health services that can cater to some of the unique challenges that women face, such as pregnancy. If you are a person who can become pregnant and are struggling with your mental health, learn more about our program or call us at 1-833-618-0017 to see if this could be the right solution for you. 

Behavioral Hospital of Bellaire

Behavioral Hospital of Bellaire is a facility that provides specialized behavioral health services focused on helping adults learn the skills necessary to live successful meaningful lives. We offer acute mental health treatment in our inpatient psychiatric facility as well as less intensive outpatient care.

Located in Houston, Texas, we take an integrative approach to mental health by having our multidisciplinary work together with patients to create customized treatment plans that focus on their individual goals. Our programs include servicing adolescents, adults and older adults. Some of the conditions we treat are depression, anxiety, substance use and more. We also have a variety of evidence-based treatment practices, such as cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavioral therapy.

To schedule a no-cost assessment or for more information, please call 1-833-379-0017