Postnatal Anxiety

What is it?

Postnatal anxiety is something that some new mothers experience after having a baby. Having a child not only causes huge changes to a woman’s body in terms of the physical shock and hormonal fluctuations (which in turn have an impact on mood), but can also have a big impact on family life, sleep levels and stress. All of these things can lead a person to become more anxious than usual. There are a number of different types of postnatal anxiety, including postnatal generalised anxiety disorder (which can present as a constant state of high anxiety, with worries about everything from your child’s health, feeding, and your ability to parent); postnatal obsessive compulsive disorder (which often involves experiencing distressing thought and concerns about harm coming to your baby); and postnatal health anxiety (which is a preoccupation that there may be something wrong with a baby’s health).  

DIY self diagnosis

If you can answer YES to most of the questions it is likely that you may be affected by postnatal anxiety.

Since your baby has been born:

  • Have you found yourself overly worrying that your baby being in danger?
  • Have you found yourself imagining your baby coming to harm?
  • Have you found your concerns over your baby’s safety are affecting your daily life?
  • Have you have experienced panic attacks?

Anxiety UK strongly advises that people seek further information and guidance from their GP, who will be able to make a formal diagnosis.

How we can help

By becoming a member of Anxiety UK – for just £40 per year (see all our membership) you enjoy a range of support services and resources, including:

  • Access to reduced cost therapies
  • One year’s free subscription to Headspace, more details here
  • Subscription to Anxious Times magazine (worth £12 annually)
  • Access to our Member’s area and other free online resources
  • Access to our exclusive member’s only online message boards
  • Free copy of Understanding Anxiety booklet (worth £3.99)
  • 25% discount on purchases of Kalms Lavender One-A-Day Capsules made via This discount is exclusively for Anxiety UK members.
  • 10% off a Listening Books membership (normally between £20 and £45 per year).
  • 25% discount on snoozzzy weighted blankets
  • 25% discount on Alpha-Stim AID device
  • Total value of more than £90 annually!

Postnatal Anxiety fact sheet

Pregnancy & Labour Phobia Fact Sheet

This fact sheet gives a detailed overview, as well as a look at some of the evidence based approaches to treating this phobia

Buy now

Recommended resources

Overcoming Worry and Generalised Anxiety Disorder is a step-by step guide to self-improvement that uses cognitive behavioural therapy techniques. You can purchase a copy in the Anxiety UK online shop here.

Worry Box helps you understand your anxiety – your worry – and introduces you to a great way to fix it: the 3 Fs (Face it, Fix it, Forget it). It will also help you beat panic attacks. You can purchase a copy in the Anxiety UK online shop here.