I have struggled so much with this blog. How do I make this have a meaning? How do I write something that actually speaks to all woman. The one’s who think they are going through it and the ones who are struggling, and the ones who are going to be struggling. I struggled in silence with my first daughter for ten months before I finally had to admit that something wasn’t right. My marriage had hit a spot that my husband who is always so steadfast in forever was going something has to change or I am taking her and leaving. To some that may sound harsh but for me who is extremely bullheaded I needed that jolt. So I sat down with him and finally, finally admitted that I wasn’t happy, I was so filled with constant worry that the worst would happen! I couldn’t fathom the idea of anyone holding or touching my daughter but me because I knew I wouldn’t let anything happen to her! I would be fine one second and than would screaming in pure rage the next. Approximately 6% of pregnant women and 10% of postpartum women develop anxiety! After everything I have gone through to get that child I couldn’t understand why I would develop more problems. I almost became one of the 20% that die postpartum from suicide due to not being treated. It tears my heart apart for the women who don’t beat that number! We don’t know there story, we don’t know what led to that point. What we do know is there voices need to live on and that they didn’t die senselessly. There children matter, the ones who will grow up without mothers because the world rarely notices these problems. In order to accomplish that dream I want to share with you what to look for what your risk factors are so you can be more informed than I was!
Some symptoms to look for when asking yourself if maybe you are suffering from PPA:
- Feeling, nervous, restless or tense
- Sense of impending danger, panic or doom
- Random Surge of Anger
- Constant Worry
- Inability to sit still
- Disturbance or sleep, and appetite
- Physical symptoms like dizziness, hot flashes, nausea
So many of these symptoms are something as a new mom you feel anyways so I can see where I missed what was going on. We as moms feel this unimaginable burden to be perfect and to admit we aren’t is so dang hard. But we have to begin saying im hurting! We have to start saying something because in this day and age there is no shame in asking for help! We are the ones who will bring awareness back!
The rate of Post Party Depression vs. Post Party Anxiety may not seem like a lot but 1 in 7 is to much! Almost 50% of women who are diagnose with Postpartum Depression are also diagnosed with Postpartum Anxiety. But Postpartum Anxiety is very rarely discussed.
Depression : 4% of pregnant women
5% of postpartum women
Anxiety: 6% of pregnant women
10% of postpartum women
Now for me I didn’t understand after everything I had been through I would suffer from anxiety. This should be the happiest time of my life, but I didn’t feel happy. I couldn’t focus on being a good mom because I was so dang worried everything would hurt her. When I started doing research after admitting something was wrong the risk factors surprised me. Not having adequate social and family support, I had that, I had more than enough of that. Divorce or Marriage problems, which for the record my marriage was fine but when you are constantly flipping out on your spouse who is just as exhausted as you are marriage problems begin to develop! Financial Hardship is also a risk factor due to the stress from that! Stressful life events over the last year such as job loss, grief, a health emergency or an accident. Now if you follow our blog you know my story, you know I had been through hell the five years prior to Hayden so that in my opinion was my biggest reason I developed Post Part Anxiety.
Now this part is for you husbands and men who might read this blog. Did you know 10% of new fathers experience some form of Postpartum Anxiety or Depression. If you are struggling, please say something! Don’t feel because you are a man you can’t say anything to someone. New fathers are going through a lot of stressors just like new mothers. Its ok to admit a problem!
Now for the fun part of this article, why I began writing this! What I learned in the past three years of struggling with this and what I have used in my journey! I found this wonderful website called draxe.com ! Now lets start with everyones favorite and probably the most known oil,
- Lavender: Considered a nervous system restorative and as we all know helps with inner peace, sleep, restlessness, irritability and panic attacks.
- Rose: Lesser used than lavender but it is extremely settling for your emotions, and when used in a diffuser or in a warm bath can decrease the feeling of anxiety.
- Vetiver: I personally LOVE this oil! It’s tranquil and grounding and helps decrease jittery ness and hypersensitivity!
- Ylang Ylang: Fun to say and one of Siobhan’s favorites! Helps with cheerfulness, courage, optimism and soothes fearfulness! Calms heart agitation and nervousness. Now a note for this one is please be careful if you suffer from low blood pressure because it does have mild sedative properties.
- Bergamot: Is one more popularly used to treat depression over anxiety because it induces relaxation and blends amazing with lavender to help with better sleep which depression worsened by with exhaustion.
- Chamomile: We all love a good chamomile tea! It decreases anxiety and worry! Dose that not just help you to better understand why your grandmother and mom always drank that nasty tea before bed. Now as mothers you love it!
- Frankincense: I Love this one too! It provides an amazing calming and tranquil energy as well as spiritual grounding! In aromatherapy it helps deepen meditation and quiets the mind! We are huge pushers of Self care Sunday and you better believe this is in my diffuser going during that time!
Aromatherapy is such an amazing way to combat anxiety and depressive moments! Our sense of smell triggers huge and powerful emotional responses in us. We process so much through our sense of smell, just think about what triggers a memory. Topically is an amazing way to also use these oils, just add a carrier oil and maybe have you spouse massage it in. Win win for everyone!
Disclaimer: If you feel any of these things please go ask for help! Don’t be that statistic of woman or men that loose this battle senselessly! Find a doctor or a counselor or a best friend or someone who can help you put the puzzle pieces back together.
The national suicide hotline is always available to talk!