How to Beat the Baby Blues with Self-Care
Having a baby is a joyous event, but it’s also one that puts stress on your mental and physical health. Babies need care 100 percent of the time, and it’s easy to get overwhelmed and forget to manage your own needs. However, you must continue to take care of yourself if you want to beat the baby blues, a common side effect of hormones post-birth.
Here are a few mom-approved tips on how to fit yourself into the self-care equation.
Rest When Your Baby Rests
This should be obvious, but many new moms use their baby’s naptime to get caught up on laundry, dishes, and other household chores. There’s nothing wrong with keeping a clean house, but try to prioritize necessary tasks, such as putting food in the fridge or wiping down the counters. If you can’t relax with a little disorganization, consider outsourcing the house cleaning for a few weeks while you recover physically. In Boulder, it will likely cost between $116 and $254 per cleaning, but you’re really buying time to heal and bond with your baby. These sleep tips from the Military Wife and Mom can help you both settle down so that you can sleep.
Keep Your Beauty Routine
Even if you’re not one to pile on the makeup, you can do some simple things that make you feel beautiful. Whether that means a quick swipe of mascara or straightening your hair, do something that helps you feel put together and ready to tackle the day. Be cautious, however, and avoid using lotions and creams with fragrances that can harm your baby. Stick with natural moisturizers, such as shea butter or cocoa butter (available on Amazon for $9.99).
Don’t Neglect Nutrition
Growing a tiny human inside your womb for nine months takes a toll on the body. Your baby’s gestational needs meant that many of the nutrients you consumed were routed directly to them. Now that they are safely swaddled, you’ll need to get to work rebuilding your vitamin and mineral stores. Make a point to eat at least three meals per day, and sneak in a few high-protein snacks between breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Your body may be low on iron, so eat plenty of beans and dark leafy greens. It’s a good idea to keep a basket full of healthy snacks next to your rocker. Snacknation lists more than 100 snack ideas, many of which are shelf-stable and may be left out and within reach at all times.
You may not feel like visitors every day, but stay in contact with your friends and family. You may have to change the way you communicate temporarily, so keep your phone close by and don’t feel guilty for texting instead of hanging out face-to-face.
Do Something You Love
You love your baby, and you want to dedicate every moment to his or her well-being. However, you still have to fuel your mind, body, and soul. If you like to read, for example, you can continue to indulge in your literary favorites by listening to audiobooks while you breastfeed. If you enjoy candlelit bubble baths, don’t stop just because you’ve given birth. If you are home alone, bring the baby into the bathroom with you. Most experts agree that infants can safely sleep in a car seat or bouncer for up to two hours with supervision. A small bassinet or even a slightly padded laundry basket will make a cozy surface for your infant while you get comfortable in the tub.
Finally, don’t feel guilty if you need to leave your baby for a short while in order to reconnect with yourself. Remember, your well-being directly impacts how you care for your infant. However, if your postpartum depression symptoms (for example, increased feelings of sadness, exhaustion, loss of appetite) persist, you may need to speak with your doctor about treatment. Take care of yourself, and you’ll find that caring for your family isn’t as difficult as you may have feared.
Emily Graham | firstname.lastname@example.org
"Successful Mothers are not the ones that have never struggled. They are the ones that never give up, despite the struggles." - Sharon Jaynes