When I found out I was pregnant again after having lived through postpartum depression and anxiety the word terrified does not begin to cover how I felt.
My total focus became keeping myself and my baby as healthy as we could be – physically and mentally. I started doing research and planning ways to lower my risk of postpartum depression and anxiety, as well as pre-eclampsia. I changed the way I ate, started working out with a trainer, and began seeing a therapist. It was hard to find an answer to my real question: Can you lower postpartum depression risk?
I read, and Googled, and took notes. I asked experts, and other moms, and wrote some more. I hired a doula and created a birth plan. We talked to our families and our friends about the support I would need and we would need as a family.
The night before Little Miss was born I looked at him and said, “Whatever happens, at least we know we did everything we could”. That was a really great feeling. I knew what my risk factors were and I knew that we had worked to lower or eliminate all of the ones we could. We were also ready with support if we needed it.
Since her birth, I have helped friends and clients replicate my process. It is one of the most rewarding parts of my work. There is no way to promise someone that they won’t ever have to deal with a maternal mental illness. There is no magic pill or therapy that can bring your risk to 0%. But there are steps that you can take to identify and lower your risk and to set up a support system around your family so that help is easy to access. This is the information every expectant parent needs!
If you are interested in lowering your risk of postpartum depression, anxiety, or OCD there are steps that you can take. I’ve created a five-day email class that will walk you through them. 4th Trimester Prep School is free, it’s simple, and it works. You can sign up right here.
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