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
- One year’s free subscription to Headspace (worth approx. £60), more details
- Access to reduced cost therapy
- Access to specialist email and helpline support
- Subscription to Anxious Times magazine (worth £12 annually)
- Access to our Member’s area and free online resources
- Free copy of Understanding Anxiety booklet (worth £3.99)
Postnatal Anxiety 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
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.