Congratulations – you are going to have a baby. It is an exciting time, which carries with it some anxiety as you have just entered the guilt industry. There is a jungle out there of rules, opinions and pressures, and everyone seems happy to give you unsolicited advice.
For many it is just not what they expected – they might be sick, fatigued, and unable to work or manage what they used to. There might be worrying events related to the pregnancy or other parts of life. It can be hard to know when you need help, and sometimes it is worth just touching base with your GP or obstetrician.
The Perinatal Period is the highest risk time in any women’s life for a mental health disorder. Pregnancy related mental health disorders affect 10-13% of all women and unfortunately tend to persist into the postnatal phase, unless treatment has been effective. For some, this may be a relapse of an existing problem or it might be arising for the first time.
The problem is that symptoms of a mental health disorder can have a significant impact on your baby’s development and on your relationship with the baby. However, every pregnancy, every mother to be, every partner, every circumstance is different and it is vital that you have an expert assessment to find the treatment that is right for you.
The Elizabeth Clinic can work with you to create a comprehensive support and treatment plan. This may include considering medication in pregnancy, access to individual or group therapy, and liaison with your other treating professionals.
Delivery can sometimes be a concern throughout the pregnancy due to past experiences and concerns. It is not uncommon for traumatic responses to reemerge for women who have had a complicated previous delivery, and it can be helpful to have some specialized support at this time.
Pregnancy after previous loss is also a challenging time with mixed feelings. It is not uncommon to need additional support during this period.
For some patients we can liaise with your obstetrician or care team, to ensure that your pregnancy, delivery and your stay in hospital are conducive to your mental health needs.
For some, an appointment with the GP Lactation Consultant or paediatrician helps boost the confidence in the lead up to delivery.
We have the Heart and Hope group program especially designed for those pregnant after fertility treatment.