Positive mental health during a pregnancy

It is important to stay mentally healthy during a pregnancy. (rawpixel.com pic)

Pregnancy can be quite stressful at times. With so many things to do to prepare for the arrival of the baby, it is easy to be overwhelmed.

The hard part is preparing for the due date when one has very little control over it. Many women experience emotional changes during their pregnancies.

This mostly happens when they realise the magnitude of bringing a baby into the world. That’s why it’s always good to have people around who have gone through the same experience to help the expectant mother cope.

If she is going to have a healthy and stress-free pregnancy, she must find ways to boost her mental health throughout the nine months.

Being mentally strong helps her cope, not only with the stress, but also some of the cravings that can be detrimental to her health and that of the baby.

Five tips to help boost an expectant mother’s health during pregnancy:

• Be realistic

Sometimes, we try so hard to control everything that we end up putting unnecessary pressure on ourselves.

Even for someone who has had a baby before, it’s always good to be realistic about the demands an expectant mother places on herself. She shouldn’t try to do everything because this will only leave her exhausted.

Whenever she feels tired, she must make sure she rests enough.

• Avoid making major changes

It’s always good to keep things as simple as possible during a pregnancy.

Sometimes, major changes such as switching jobs or moving house can be destabilising for a pregnant woman. Such moves call for a period of adaptation, which is not ideal when a baby is on the way.

• Be physically active

Physical exercise causes the body to release endorphins and lifts an expectant mother’s overall mood.

It is perfect for both her and the baby. Pregnancy yoga and swimming are just some of the exercises she should try. Of course, if she prefers other exercises, she should choose them.

If she can exercise with other pregnant women, that would be great.

• Positive expectations

Visualise everything working out right to avoid stressing the expectant mother too much. One question that is quite common is: How big is her baby at 25 weeks pregnant?

The best way to approach things as she awaits the answer to this and many other questions is to have a positive outlook on everything.

• Understand the entire birth process

Understanding how her body works and what the birth process is all about can help an expectant mother reduce her anxiety levels.

There are so many places she can find the information she is looking for. She can read books and watch videos to acquaint herself with vital information about what she should expect.

How her pregnancy pans out has everything to do with how she approaches it and the things and thoughts she occupies herself with.

While it’s not possible to be absolutely worry-free, it is still good to try to avoid things that deepen her worries. If there is anything that is making her anxious, she should try to avoid it.

Also, she must remember to surround herself with the right people.

This article was originally published on Psychreg.

Dennis Relojo-Howell is the world’s first blog psychologist and founder of Psychreg. As an international mental health advocate, he speaks at various conferences around the world and believes that everyone experiencing a mental health problem deserves both support and respect.