The birth of your baby brings excitement and new challenges, especially as you recover physically and settle into a new routine. This postpartum or "after birth" adjustment usually takes months – not weeks – for most new moms.
There are some steps you can take to support yourself during this period:
- Rest each time your baby sleeps
- Limit visitors
- Accept all offers of help
- Attend a parenting class or a reunion of your childbirth class
- Begin light physical activity, such as walking or swimming, on a regular basis
BABY BLUES & POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION
More than half of all new mothers say they feel emotionally "down" after giving birth.
The "baby blues" usually appears three to four days after baby is born and lasts about two weeks. You may feel tearful, impatient, irritable, restless or anxious. The feelings come and then go away within a short period of time.
Postpartum depression may appear around the fourth week after birth. It can also begin just before your period returns, after weaning, or anytime in the first year. Symptoms can be mild or so severe that you can feel like you're "going crazy." With depression, you may have "good" days and "bad" days. These feelings do not go away. You need help and support.
To help moms going through postpartum depression or just general feelings of sadness after birth, we offer two support groups:
Circle of Moms is a safe and welcoming space to talk about pregnancy, postpartum care, breastfeeding, stressors, change in identity/role, and the importance of sleep and self-care. Circle of Moms is open to all women who are pregnant or postpartum.
CALM Moms is a skills-based group for moms in the NICU/ICC/SCN/CVCC. If your baby needs to stay in the hospital, CALM Moms can help you cope with feelings of sadness and uncertainty.
Use our postpartum depression worksheet to help you figure out if you have "baby blues" or true depression.
Learn more about postpartum emotions.
FIND A DOCTOR FOR YOUR BABY
Babies receive their first pediatric check-up while they’re here. Find a doctor for your baby for the important first two-week visit and beyond.
POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION: MORE THAN THE BABY BLUES
About eight in ten new mothers feel down after giving birth. Read more about postpartum depression and the services available to you.