Anxiety in pregnancy also known as antenatal anxiety is less well known than postnatal depression. Yet 1 in 10 women will experience it. If you had anxiety before you were pregnant and was on medication your GP may suggest you try to come off your medication and switch to talking therapies or make sure you are on a medication, that it safe to take while being pregnant.
How to recognize the symptoms of anxiety
If you have any of the following and it is interfering with your everyday life you may wish to consult a doctor or your midwife or health visitor.
Some anxiety is normal but if it is chronic or continual it can affect the way your unborn baby grows and develops. In some cases, it has been known to cause premature child birth low birth weight or pre-eclampsia.
Talking therapies is the probably the preferred treatment.
Your doctor or medical professional may refer you for cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). This is a talking therapy that helps you look at your emotions and change your thought process.
Counselling or group therapy where you can discuss your thoughts with others.
Yoga this is not recommended until you are 14 weeks pregnant. However, yoga can help.
Speak to the National Childbirth Trust about groups in your area where you can meet with other mums.
Such as pregnancy massage but should be avoided, during the first 12 weeks as the abdomen should not be massaged, during this time.
Limit the amount of information you take in do not overload your mind. Try not to delve into scary things that probably won’t happen.
Pray if you feel it will help. Speak to others in your church if you have one.
Create a support group
Create a support group using social media to talk to other women.
There are two types of medication that can be safely used during pregnancy.
These are anti-depressant medications selective serotonin and reuptake inhibitors also know as SSRI’s or tricyclic anti-depressants these are good for anxiety and also used for depression and they are not associated with birth defects. The doctor may also prescribe a benzodiazepine to take while the antidepressant is taking effect and this can take 3 weeks or more.
Below are some helpful organizations
Anxiety UK Helpline 08444 775 774 This is an organization run by people with anxiety disorders offering information and support for people who have anxiety.
No Panic Helpline 0800 138 8889 online and telephone support for people with anxiety or people suffering with panic attacks or obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Mind helpline 0300 123 3393 mental health information and support.
Most importantly if you feel anxious speak to someone x.
Claudette is a passionate campaigner and activist for mental health stigma and domestic abuse. She believes that everyone should be treated equally regardless of their disability or gender. She has diagnoses of Bipolar Disorder, endometriosis, Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia. Claudette has a certificate in Management studies. Her interests include beauty, makeup, animal’s politics, current affairs and social networking.