Most women have some worries and anxiety in early pregnancy, even when there haven’t been problems like pain or bleeding. Your body is undergoing very big changes even in the early weeks, and that includes changes in levels of hormones circling your system, which can influence how you feel.
You will probably also be worried about whether your baby is OK and whether the tests you decide to have will all be normal. You should be assured that these feelings affect nearly all women at some point.
Try talking to your friends and family who may have had babies themselves and do not forget you can contact your own midwife. There is lots of information available to you, and your midwife will point you in the right direction. If you do feel particularly depressed or anxious, you can also ask to speak to your own GP.
Similarly, in later pregnancy you will probably have questions and some concerns about labour and delivery.
Increasing awareness of depression after delivery has alerted many health professionals to the possibility that depression may start during early or late pregnancy.
Surveys of pregnant women suggest that those with a previous history of mental health problems or social or domestic problems are at greater risk of getting anxious or depressed. If you do start to get worried or depressed, use your midwife as a source of information and reassurance.
After you have had your baby, you will be very busy settling into a new routine. This is a time when the combination of a recent labour, changes to your hormones and disturbed or sleepless nights can combine to make you feel very emotional. At times the tiredness can catch up with you and you may feel weepy, upset and emotional. This is very common a few days after the baby is born and is called ‘baby blues’ or ‘pregnancy blues’. Do not be too anxious and do not feel ashamed. Remember that many women feel like this. Talk to your partner and your close family and friends – they will be keen to help and support you. Your midwife or health visitor will also be happy to listen to any concerns. This usually settles quite quickly. It is very rare to get serious depression after the baby is born, but if you do get more and more worried, you should make an appointment to see your GP.