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While you rejoice the birth of your newborn and settle into your newfound role of motherhood, something deep down nags you and puts you off completely, making you feel low, depressed and distracted. This is called baby blues that follow closely after childbirth. At times these feelings of despair can come in the way of smooth childrearing and also hamper the process of bonding with your newborn. Know that it is absolutely normal post delivery, what with all those aches, pains and strains of labour and childbirth. But there are ways in which you can reduce the influence of your blues. Here's what you can do.
Sleep when your baby sleeps: Lack of sleep is the prime cause of baby blues to set in. So catch on some sleep while your baby does the same. It might be difficult for you to follow the erratic sleep schedules like that of your baby, but you have no other option left. If your baby prefers to sleep at 10 in the morning lie down and rest even if you feel it difficult to sleep at that time. Remember fragmented sleep is better than no sleep at all. A refreshing 20-minute nap will help you revive your energies and attend to your baby's needs better. Give the smartphone and social media a miss when your baby is sleeping and try to get some shut eye. Also read about the sleep safe rules you should follow for your baby.
Take breaks often: Sure you cannot leave your newborn behind for too long, but catch up on some me-time for the benefit of your health and your baby's wellbeing. Go for strolls or talk to your friends, ask your spouse or an elder in the family to baby sit for a while. Child rearing can be tough; taking time off from the chore will help you concentrate more on its nuances when you are back from your breaks.
Get help from family: Ask your mother, sister or your spouse to baby sit for a while if you feel sleep deprived and want to catch on some extra sleep time. If family isn't able to help you, hire domestic help to look after your baby while you get enough rest to be on your toes again. Also read how to choose a nanny for your baby.
Try to bond with a positive mind set: The best way to fight baby blues is to try and bond with your baby with a positive mind set. While you can ask for help around try doing the basics of baby care on your own. Feed, bathe, sing and play with your baby often. Breastfeeding helps in bonding with your child better and countering the feelings of baby blues. Even if you opt for the bottle make sure that you do it on your own. Experts believe that a mother draws immense satisfaction from the actions undertaken by her that helps to address a particular need of her baby. This feeling helps to lessen the effects of baby blues and helps you to get better at honing parenting skills. Also read how to bond with your newborn effectively.
Exercise and meditate: While you are sleep deprived and breastfeed around the clock, it's a little too much to expect you to exercise and meditate to help fight the blues. But your alternatives are less and so its better you wear your walking shoes and move out. Exercise helps your systems to take in more oxygen that ups your energy levels and helps ward off the feelings of depression and blues by releasing hormones that counter negative emotions. If meditation isn't a possibility, try talking to your baby in a more positive tone breathing deeply and focusing on your acts. This will help you to concentrate on your baby more and make you feel less depressed. Also read how deep breathing helps during pregnancy.
Seek for help: There is a thin line that separates baby blues from postpartum depression, if you think that your mood swings are affecting you in such a way that you are unable to concentrate on other spheres of your life, get an appointment with a professional and get treated before the problem escalates. Also read about the causes, symptoms and treatments of postpartum depression.
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