Perinatal mental health

Print Friendly and PDF

Becoming a parent is a big life event.

It's natural to experience a range of emotions and reactions during and after your pregnancy. But it's important to ask for help or support if you need it. You're likely to find that many new mothers are feeling the same way.

It can be really difficult to feel able to talk openly about how you're feeling when you become a new parent. You might feel:

  • Pressure to be happy and excited
  • Like you have to be on top of everything
  • Worried you're a bad parent if you're struggling with your mental health
  • Worried that your baby will be taken away from you if you admit how you're feeling.

Around one in 10 women will experience a mental health problem during pregnancy or in the year after giving birth.  It can and does affect anyone.

Many people will have the baby blues after giving birth, but this should not be confused with a perinatal mental health problem. Baby blues are extremely common – you might feel tearful, anxious and emotional, this usually last just a few days.

This might be a new mental health problem or another episode of a mental health problem you've experienced before - these are known as perinatal mental health problems.

This could be:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • OCD
  • PTSD
  • Low mood
  • Panic disorders
  • Psychosis

These can make you feel sad and withdrawn from your baby or your partner or make you feel extra pressure to be the perfect parent.

Many people will have the baby blues after giving birth, but this should not be confused with a perinatal mental health problem. Baby blues are extremely common – you might feel tearful, anxious and emotional, this usually last just a few days.

Women who are living with a perinatal condition need care and support. We are all individuals and need to embrace this. Find out what support is available by talking to your midwife, GP or health visitor.

Alongisde women, we’re also here to support new fathers.  We know it can be a challenging time having a baby, so we will priorise your care in the 24 months from the birth of your baby. We also have access to DadPad, a really handy guide on caring for your child – giving you hints and tips so you can take control of what is happening.

Peer support

We have three brilliant and amazing peer support workers who can help you on your journey. You can watch Charlynne's story below.

Our peer support workers run a number of support groups across the county.

We run a support group called Calms which meets weekly at locations across Lincoln- including Hartsholme Park, Whisby Nature Reserve and Boultham Park, building connections. This has recently been expanded to Boston and Stamford where groups run bi-weekly. Please contact us for more information.

The team has started an online Steps to Recovery group, where our peer support workers plus our OTs can cover coping mechanisms, wellbeing, which explores understanding anxiety and depression during the perinatal period. It also covers distress tolerance, coping strategies, which include, challenging unhelpful thoughts, mindfulness, relaxation, occupational wellbeing and satisfaction and value based living and compassionate self-help.

Feedback

Here’s the latest feedback for our service.

“A great service that has grown my confidence as a first time mum.”

“Great service which feel my confidence as a first time mum.”

“Kirsty Wilkinson was very helpful and really nice to be around.”

“Amy Lewis is an excellent practitioner who truly has the best interests of the patient at heart. I wouldn’t be here today without her.”

“I want to Thank Charlynne the Peer Support worker for everything she did for me, she changed my recovery and having her experience and empathy is invaluable.”

“Fantastic service for new mums suffering with anxiety.”

“The counselling I have been receiving has been a tremendous help and I know that they are on the end of the phone or email when I need them.”

CALMS_group_Pic.jpg

Accessibility tools

Return to header