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How To Reduce Stress During Pregnancy

How To Treat Stress When Naturally Doesnt Work

Managing Stress During Pregnancy | Kaiser Permanente

If you have followed the above steps and you still feel constantly anxious, you may need to talk to your health care provider about possibly starting anxiolytics. There are a number ofThere are a number of medications that are safe to take while you are pregnant. Stress is common during pregnancy, and there is nothing wrong with seeking treatment, in whatever way works best for you.

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Expect And Accept Changes In Your Body

Stress in early pregnancy that is not relieved can grow more severe over time. Some women feel full of energy during the second trimester, but many do not. As the weeks go by, your body will change and your physical abilities will change with it. You may feel more emotional than normal as your system responds to varying hormone levels. Listen to your body and take time to relax and rest when needed.

Your appetite may change, and good nutrition is important throughout your pregnancy. Eat small meals throughout the day, and dont skip breakfast. Staying well-hydrated and full of available nutrients is good for the baby and can even your blood sugar, improve your mood, and help you cope with stress.

How To Reduce Stress During Pregnancy

Jan 29, 2022 | Pregnancy

Stress can make our heart race, our blood pressure rise and our bodies go into fight or flight mode. The negative effects of stress on pregnancy have been well studied. In fact, studies have shown that the effects of stress during pregnancy dont just affect a fetus development in the womb, but throughout their life and even impacts future generations. The need for having tools, strategies, and support to reduce stress throughout life, but especially during pregnancy, cannot be emphasized enough.

Think about the stress you face on a daily basis, how it impacts you, and what you do to minimize or combat this stress? If you face a lot of stress and/or dont have well-developed coping mechanisms, then the following tips are for you!

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How Does Stress Affect Pregnancy

Stress during pregnancy can arise for a number of different reasons. People who are pregnant may feel stressed about their pregnancy, especially if they have complications like high blood pressure, gestational diabetes, and preeclampsia. Pregnant women may also feel stressed by other unrelated issues like finances, work or school responsibilities, caring for other children, and conflict in relationships. Pregnancy is a time when a woman undergoes significant hormonal shifts, which may also contribute to an increase in feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression.5

High levels of stress during pregnancy can have a physical and emotional impact on the mother. Mothers who are stressed during pregnancy have a higher risk of miscarriage and are more likely to develop pre-eclampsia, a dangerous condition that involves high blood pressure.6 Stress during pregnancy is also linked to depression and anxiety for the mother.1

Experiencing depression and anxiety during pregnancy is concerning because it increases the risk of postpartum depression, a form of depression that develops shortly after giving birth.7 Women dealing with stress during pregnancy may have a more difficult pregnancy and a hard time enjoying the experience of being pregnant.

Ask Friends And Family For Help

Stressing Out During Pregnancy? Here Are Fun Ideas to Stay Calm and ...

Pregnancy is a time when you should not be facing all the stress alone. Pregnancy is not the time for you to be too proud to ask for help or to accept the help offered to you. Stress is a sign that you are in a situation that is stretching your capacities too thin.

The people closest to you, your partner, family or close friends can take the weight off your shoulders at least for a while. Reaching out for help also means admitting you are not entirely in control and this is one of the concessions from which you can only benefit. Even when your partner cant complete chores perfectly, dont nag and waste the chance to take some time for yourself. Your social network, friends, family, and neighbors can be of very practical help as well.

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Try To Maintain A Healthy Diet

As well as partaking in gentle exercise, its a good idea to maintain a healthy diet too. You might not realize it, but what you eat can directly impact your stress levels. A diet full of sugar for example, will spike your stress and anxiety levels. Youll also suffer that well-known sugar crash which leaves you feeling tired, stressed and irritable.

Eating a healthy, balanced and nutritious diet will ensure you and baby stay healthy and happy.

How Can Stress Affect Your Pregnancy

Feeling stressed is common during pregnancy because pregnancy is a time of many changes. You may welcome these changes, but they can add new stresses to your life.

High levels of stress that continue for a long time may cause health problems, like high blood pressure and heart disease. During pregnancy, stress can increase the chances of having a premature baby or a low-birthweight baby increasing the risk for other health problems.

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Cut Back On Your Daily Chores

These days, its common to feel like you have to carry on as normal for as long as you can into the pregnancy. Women feel a lot of expectation for them to be able to do everything, regardless of whether or not they are pregnant. However, you need to remember that although pregnancy doesnt make you an invalid, it does take its toll on your body. So, youre going to need to take it a little easier while youre pregnant if you want to avoid burnout.

Cut back on your daily chores and make sure youre getting plenty of rest. Splitting your tasks down into smaller ones throughout the day will ensure you still get everything done without overdoing it.

Avoid The Source Of Stress

Stress during pregnancy | Tips To Manage Stress During Pregnancy | Mumsworld

Once you identify the true problems, you should begin to recognize the source of your stress. If its a colleague or your boss, it can be difficult to avoid your source of stress, but at least you can be better prepared and limit the interactions.

A little thing that you can do to help is cleaning up the clutter on your desk. Doing this can also help remove the clutter from your mind and help you feel as if you can breath better. If youre expecting, this is also the time to give up stressful volunteer tasks. People should understand that you have a lot going on now that youre pregnant so you need to take this time to relax and focus on you after busy workdays.

I also recommend that you not make any major changes in your life until after your baby is born. This can be a huge source of stress. For some reason every pregnant woman thinks its a great idea to move into a new house or do some big renovation to their current house or some type of major project. This can be a lot for you and your baby to handle. Also, beware of the holiday season. Were quickly approaching that time of the year and you really need to let someone else do the work. Save yourself the stress.

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How Does Stress Cause Pregnancy Problems

We dont completely understand the effects of stress on pregnancy. But certain stress-related hormones may play a role in causing certain pregnancy complications. Serious or long-lasting stress may affect your immune system and increase the chances of getting an infection of the uterus. This type of infection can cause premature birth. Other ways stress can cause pregnancy problems include:

  • Normal pregnancy discomforts, like trouble sleeping, body aches and morning sickness may feel even worse with stress
  • You may have problems eating. This can make you underweight, gain too much weight during pregnancy or increase your risk of having gestational diabetes and preterm labor.
  • Stress may lead to high blood pressure, preeclampsia, premature birth and having a low-birthweight infant.
  • Stress also may affect how some deal with stress by smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol or taking street drugs, which can lead to serious health problems in you and you baby.

Many women worry that stress may lead to miscarriage. While extra stress isn’t good for your overall health, there’s no evidence that stress causes miscarriage.

Labor Is Freaking You Out

First, remember that every pregnant woman is nervous about delivering her baby . Watters suggests this meditation exercise to help you get in tune with your body:

Get in a comfortable position, either seated or lying down on your side. Tense one area of your body for 2-3 seconds and then let that area relax. Move from your toes up to your face, tensing and relaxing each area.

This will come in very handy when you’re in labor, because it’ll help you learn how to relax all areas of your body, conserve energy, and make the work of birthing your baby easier. The breathing exercises can also help you focus and relax. Visualizing an easy and smooth delivery can be very powerful, reassuring and relaxing when that anxiety arises.

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Here are a few more calming tips to use in any situation:

Create a mantra. Mantras are simple phrases you can recite to yourself to change a limiting belief in any situation, and reduce stress. When you become overwhelmed, find a mantra that you can repeat at any time to ease anxiety, suggests Trapani. Create an encouraging statement like, “I am completely ready to take care of my baby”. Once you choose a mantra, say it to yourself silently over and over whenever anxiety pops up.

Try lavender essential oil. Keep it in your purse and put a drop on your wrist. Rub your wrists and hands together and massage the back of your neck and tops of your shoulders when you feel stressed.

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What Are Some Treatments For Anxiety During Pregnancy

Fortunately, there are many treatments that can reduce anxiety during pregnancy and help you feel better. For many women, anti-anxiety medication is not an option during pregnancy, as there is little information on the safety of such medication on the fetus. Some women who had previously taken medications for anxiety may wish to discontinue medications during pregnancy for personal reasons.

Therapies such as cognitive behavior therapy demonstrate promise in the peripartum period . CBT focuses on challenging maladaptive thoughts, emotions, and actions, and it uses anxiety management strategies such as diaphragmatic breathing .

If your anxiety is severe, medications may be an option for you. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are commonly prescribed for depression and anxiety during pregnancy and after delivery. It does not appear that SSRIs are associated with an increased risk of major congenital malformations. However, SSRIs may be associated with transient neonatal symptoms such as jitteriness, tremor, crying, and trouble feeding, which resolve on their own in a few days.

The use of benzodiazepines such as lorazepam and alprazolam during pregnancy has long been a controversial topic. Although older studies showed an association between their use and an increased risk for cleft lip and palate, a more recent study looking at benzodiazepine use during pregnancy did not show this link when these medications were used alone .

How Can I Reduce Stress During Pregnancy

How to reduce stress during Pregnancy

1. Rest and focus on your babythey can hear youbond with your babysleep a mum2. Talk about itantenatal or parenting class3. Eat wellEating welloily fish and seafoodhave two portions of oily fishtunachickeneggscheesewaterDehydrationheadacheshealthy eating tips4. Get some exerciseExercisesafe to exerciseSwimmingPregnancy yoga5. Prepare for birthlabourantenatal classescaesarean birth planhospitalbirth centrebirth planfear of birth6. Prepare for family lifenewbornfinancesjob7. Coping with commutingrisk assessment8. Money matterssecond-handfamily financesgovernment benefitsPaid Parental Leave9. Try complementary therapieslower back massagerelaxation massagearomatherapysafe for use10. Treat yourselfbump

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Eat Well And Stay Hydrated

What you eat and drink becomes very important when you are pregnant. Generally, the recommended healthy diet that benefits pregnancy also helps your body fight stress. But one item in particularwatercan help immensely when youre feeling stressed. Being adequately hydrated also helps your body eliminate the stress hormone cortisol faster. When you drink plenty of water cortisol leaves your body before it can have a negative impact on your body or your pregnancy .

Make sure you drink six glasses of water daily spread throughout the day. Hydration is even more vital if youre fighting morning sickness and vomiting. In this case, replacing the water with some ginger tea that you can sip throughout the day will help.

Stay Active Every Day

Exercise releases endorphins that will lift your mood. You dont have to do aerobics classes or hit the gym. Just try to make staying active part of your everyday life. For example, you could go for a walk or do some office exercises. This can reduce stress and its good for your unborn baby, too. Find out more about exercises you can do when youre pregnant.

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How To Reduce Stress During Pregnancy Through Exercise

3. Stretch when you get up or have been sitting awhile. It will relax your muscles and make you feel less tense.

4. Even if you go slow when exercising, keep going. Remember that even something as low-impact as walking or swimming helps clear your mind and strengthen your body.

5. Sign up for a prenatal yoga class. A recent study showed that taking yoga class can help lower a mom-to-bes anxiety level.

Ways To Reduce Your Stress

Anxiety during Pregnancy: 8 Helpful Tips!!!

Women with too much stress need to learn healthy ways to deal with it. Here are some tips:

1. Talk about itShare the joys, problems and worries of pregnancy with someone close to you. This can make your pregnancy seem less stressful. If, for some reason, you do not have the support of your partner, try to spend time with other people whose company you enjoy.

2. Learn about pregnancy and childbirthAttend prenatal classes and meet other women going through pregnancy, too. The breathing and concentration exercises you will learn for childbirth can help you relax now. By knowing what to expect and being prepared, you can reduce any worry you may be feeling about the birth itself. Working with your health-care provider and support person to prepare a birth plan may help, too.

3. Get activeExercise is a proven way to lift your spirits and reduce stress.

4. Rest and relaxMake sure you are sleeping enough. Learn other ways to rest and relax. Your public library will have books and audiotapes about reducing stress and learning to relax.

Excerpted from Healthy Beginnings: Giving your baby the best start, from preconception to birth, copyright 2009 The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada.

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Extreme Anxieties Depression Support Groups

Being overly anxious and stressed all the time is unusual and only affects a very few pregnant women, but can cause problems. If you talk to your midwife or GP, they will help you, by referring you to a support group, counsellor or a psychotherapist.

Please get help when you are pregnant, as all the support can be set up for when you have given birth.

If you are taking medication for depression, talk to your midwife or GP if you are worried about any affects it has on your baby, but dont suddenly stop your medication.

Massage and aromatherapy can be very useful to alleviate stress and anxieties. Massage during pregnancy will not only benefit you, but your partner as well. This will make them feel part of the whole pregnancy and make you feel that you are not doing this on your own.

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How Can You Reduce Stress During Pregnancy

Here are some ways to help you reduce stress:

  • Talk to you provider about your pregnancy discomforts and know they are temporary.
  • Eat healthy foods, get plenty of sleep and exercise .
  • Cut back on activities you dont need to do or ask your partner to help with chores.
  • Try relaxation activities, like prenatal yoga or meditation.
  • Take a childbirth education class so you know what to expect during pregnancy and when your baby arrives. Practice the breathing and relaxation methods you learn in your class.
  • If youre working, plan ahead to help you and your employer get ready for your time away from work. Use any time off you may have to get extra time to relax.

The people around you may help with stress relief too. Here are some ways to reduce stress with the help of others:

  • Have a good support network, which may include your partner, family and friends. Or ask your provider about resources in the community that may be helpful.
  • Figure out whats making you stressed and talk to your support network about it
  • If you think you may have depression or anxiety talk to your provider right away.
  • Ask for help from people you trust. Accept help when they offer. For example, you may need help cleaning the house, or you may want someone to go with you to your prenatal visits.

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