After months of crying at commercials, the euphoria of finally holding your baby in your arms was a wonderful relief. But now it’s been a few days, or maybe a few weeks, and you’re realizing that you still feel a little… bummed. You can’t quite put a finger on it, and you don’t think you’re depressed or have postpartum depression, but you’re just not as happy as you think you should be.
Whether you’re breast or formula feeding, you may not be inclined to take either medication or supplements to try to improve your mood. So what other options do you have?
You have several, as it turns out.
Increase the Fatty Acids in Your Diet
Omega-3s, found in fatty fish, flax and chia seeds, can help boost mood naturally without having a negative impact on the baby. Combine the fatty acids with some Vitamin D, found naturally outdoors by spending a few minutes in the sun or in foods such as fatty fish, beef liver, cheese or egg yolks, and you can boost your mood even more.
Nurture Your Body
When you have a tiny, helpless new life to care for, it’s easy to neglect yourself. But taking care of yourself makes it easier to take care of your new baby, and will improve your mood. This can be as simple as getting a shower every day for some moms.
Do all that you can, however, to truly reap the benefits. Put the baby in a stroller or a wrap and take a walk. Go to the store and buy healthy foods to snack on. Get plenty of sleep, even if that means handing the baby to your spouse or other relative so you can take a nap.
Be Realistic with Your Goals
Sometimes, new moms bring themselves down by setting unrealistic goals that they can’t meet. You might have kept the house spotless, worked a full-time job, hit the gym daily, and prepared gourmet meals three times a day pre-baby, but that’s not going to happen right now.
The house might get messy, dirty dishes might sit in the sink a bit longer, and you might eat more processed foods or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches than you’d like. Accepting this will improve your mood by relieving the pressure you’re putting on yourself.
While you’re doing this, don’t let others pressure you into unrealistic goals, either. If your spouse complains about the state of the house or the food you’ve prepared, make it clear that they’re welcome to pitch in. Remind them that you’re taking care of a baby now, and you simply can’t do everything.
Talk to Your Doctor or Midwife
Even if you feel like you’re not dealing with postpartum depression or any other major mood issues, talking about your feelings can be beneficial. It can make you feel better just to say how you’re feeling out loud and have someone tell you it’s perfectly normal.
Alternatively, if it is something more than just feeling a little down, talking to your doctor or Midwife can ensure that you get the help you need. Your Midwife can help you figure out if your feelings are within the normal range or something that might need to be addressed by your doctor.
Don’t feel that you need to wait for a scheduled appointment to talk to your doctor, either. Call and ask for an appointment to discuss your feelings sooner. If you explain how you’re feeling, most doctors will get you in quickly. No one wants to see a new mom struggle.
We’re Here for You
If you need a break, but you don’t feel you have anyone who can relieve you, we’re here for you. We offer a variety of services that can give you the relief you need. Contact us today to learn more about our postpartum packages and how we can help.
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