Perinatal Mental Health and NICU Parents

One of my passions is supporting clients through the challenges of early parenthood. This might include any of the following:

  • Fertility struggles
  • Miscarriage or infant loss
  • Depression and anxiety during pregnancy
  • Traumatic birth experiences
  • NICU stays and prematurity
  • Adjusting to life with a new baby
  • Postpartum depression, anxiety, and OCD.

Taking Care of Yourself While Your Baby is in the Hospital

When your baby is in the hospital it can be incredibly stressful and overwhelming. As a parent, it is important that you take care of yourself so that you are able to provide the best care for your baby.

Get outside every day.

Move, walk, soak up sunlight.

Allow others to help you at home.

Be ready for friends and family who want to help. Make a list of things they can do, like food delivery, laundry, cleaning, or taking care of other children.

Stay connected to people who are positive and give back emotionally.

It’s okay to set boundaries with people who are draining or emotionally exhausting. This is the time to take care of your baby, not others.

Make sure that you are eating enough, sleeping enough, and taking care of your physical needs.

Eat as healthy as you can. Sleep as much as you can. Take your vitamins and accept hugs, if it feels right.

Talk to somebody every day.

Make a phone call to a friend, family member, or talk to a hospital social worker. Ask them to listen to feelings or emotions that are present for you.

Advocate for your relationship with your baby.

Make sure you get as much holding and skin-to-skin time as possible. Involve yourself with your baby’s care, diaper changes, bathing, and feeding.

It is okay to do something for you.

Take a long bath or have lunch with a friend. Well cared for parents are best able to care for their babies.

Avoid Googling if researching your baby’s condition leads to unnecessary worry.

Get your information from medical professionals and resources they recommend. It is okay to ask questions of the doctors and nurses caring for your baby!

See a therapist if your feelings start to overwhelm you.

Therapy can help you to process the challenging experiences and emotions related to having a baby in the hospital. Contact Here and Now Counseling for an appointment, or talk to your social worker to find a therapist.