Night anxiety is a real thing.
Yes it is that terrible feeling in your chest that makes you feel like things won’t be right. You can’t put your finger on it but it seems to be happening more and more since you had your new little person.
Night anxiety is better know as postpartum anxiety.
This can be very normal in short term doses especially when you are suffering from lack of sleep, hormone changes, feeling overwhelmed as a new parent.
Getting to know motherhood, parenthood and your new person is a 24 hour job and if often a trial and error situation.
We characterise normal transient anxiety in the early weeks of parenthood however if it something that stops you from enjoying simple events or continues to go on for more than two weeks we encourage you to see your GP for further assistance. The Panda website has great information to help if you feel things have developed beyond a normal change http://www.panda.org.au
However if this sinking feeling is new to you and you want some helpful strategies to make the nights easier try these helpful hints-
- Don’t worry things will get better
Try not to feel that every bad night will go on forever. Your new little person has no idea its night time and they just want to tell you the troubles going on inside. You often can’t fix these problems either your little person just needs a cuddle and a calm parent. The pains will pass and they will eventually fall asleep. Try not to google solutions these will often not work and cost you lots of money. Why not sign up for The Baby Manual and watch a handy video on why your baby is changing rather than what to do about it http://www.thebabymanual.com.au
2. Baby always breast-feed more in the evening
This is because they often have an unsettled tummy in the evenings and night. A warm bath can help. However this is really normal. Try not to stress and just feed them as they are hungry. It is really good for your boobs draining the milk ducts well and giving your baby all the nutrient dense milk they need to eventually get that longer stretch of sleep. If you are worried a pro-biotic can be helpful in getting the babies tummy bacteria settled nicely. I recommend Qiara- this is specific in helping babies tummies and great for boobies as well http://www.qiara.com.au
3. Try and be more organised earlier in the day
Leaving meal prep till 6pm is a terrible idea. You will often feel like you are getting nothing done and end up eating at 10pm after your baby has eaten lots of times.
Start preparing for dinner early in the arvo so that making dinner is a few easy steps. Then you will feel like you are all over dinner prep and then your not feeling hungry as well as anxious.
You could even grab some mothers Milk Lactation Cookies as that arvo/night snack to help give a some yummy milk for your baby. https://www.mothernurture.com.au/shop
4. A spray of rescue remedy will often help to reduce anxiety.
This is found in most supermarkets and health food stores. It is a homeopathic medicine but I have found it to be very helpful if that brain gets going with worst cases scenarios of ‘never being able to sleep again’ and helps you calm the farm.
5. Have a rest during the day when you can. Or even sleep in if possible.
This helps you feel less tired and ready to cope with a more restless start to the night.
These are my top five tips.
I would love to hear yours that have helped you- please comment to help the other new mum’s feeling the same.
Postpartum anxiety is normal for short blocks of time.
This shouldn’t last forever and if it last for longer than two weeks I recommend seeing your GP.
Get to know your little person, find a good show on TV and enjoy not having too go to work early the next day.
These little people have personalities they don’t read the sleep book you feel might help.
That sleep routine will just make you question or doubt everything – so put it down!
Look at your little person you made! And smile.
As this too will pass mumma- you are doing a great job.