Are you pregnant? If so, I am so happy for you! If you have anxiety during your pregnancy, to be honest, that is perfectly normal! However, it can be frightening for some women and you hear a lot of horror stories too, which certainly doesn’t help matters. I want you to take a deep breath and relax and understand that although your anxiety is very real…it is time to be happy and at peace.
Relatives and friends try to be helpful and provide information on ‘what to do and what not to do during pregnancy’ and this can cause grief! To understand how to cope with anxiety, it helps to understand the causes and symptoms of anxiety during pregnancy.
Causes and Symptoms of Anxiety During Pregnancy
The major cause for your anxiety is your body is undergoing several changes during your pregnancy. Hormonal changes are taking place. Everyday pressure at work and high levels of chronic stress due to a hectic lifestyle can worsen your situation. If you are concerned about your family, it can make it impossible for you to prioritize your own health over everything else.
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You may feel selfish taking extra care of yourself, which can increase your anxiety.
Anxiety symptoms during pregnancy may vary from one woman to another. Here are a few:
- Soreness, muscle aches, tension, unsteadiness, insomnia, nausea
- Fatigue, getting tired with even little activity
- Moodiness, increased irritability, dreadful feelings
- Difficulty in relaxing
- Inability to control anxious thoughts
- Lack of concentration
- Dizziness and sweating
- Fear of miscarriage.
Excessive worry about future events and crying spells are also symptoms. Excessive anxiety can lead to chest pain, abdominal pain, headache, breathing problems, etc.
Coping with Anxiety During Pregnancy
Taking anti-anxiety medications during pregnancy can prove to be harmful. Cognitive-behavioral therapy and relaxation techniques can help reduce the need for medication. They are generally used to treat anxiety in pregnant women.
Here are ways to cope with your anxiety:
You should eat healthy foods that reduce anxiety! Follow a healthy and balanced diet so that you can protect your body with everything it needs to protect itself from stress.
- B vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, ?t?.), vitamins C, D, E, help keep you mentally and physically fit.
- Minerals such as magnesium, zinc, calcium, iron and antioxidants help boost your energy levels and lower stress.
- Consumption of natural foods, lots of fruits and vegetables, lean meat, fish, nuts and seeds and healthy fats are essential for preventing anxiety.
- Avoiding soda, caffeine, alcohol, drugs, smoking, foods with preservatives, foods fortified with hormones, etc., helps prevent anxiety.
- ‘Mood foods‘ rich in amino acids help fight anxiety. Consult your doctor and take any nutritional supplements prescribed by your doctor.
Sufficient Rest and Regular Exercise
You need to get plenty of sleep. Lack of sleep and restcan result in increased stress and anxiety. Along with sufficient rest, regular exercise plays an important role in maintaining the hormonal balance.
During your pregnancy, take a good walk every day and perform prenatal yoga exercises. Specially designed anxiety exercises can be done after consultation with your doctor and a physical trainer if desired. Increased ‘inactivity’ is not advisable. So get exercising!
The simple answer to the question ‘how to prevent anxiety’ is ‘do something that makes you happy’.
Think about what makes you happy and define your priorities. Minimize the things that makes you anxious. Avoid watching frightening news, scary stories and movies. Spend your time in the garden or in the company of your friends.
- Aromatherapy and massage therapy can help you feel relaxed and calm. Soothing essential oils are excellent for relieving anxiety naturally.
Herbal Supplements and Remedies
Consult your physician about the effects and side effects of certain herbal supplements or natural remedies. Various herbs like ginseng, valerian root, kava kava and chamomile can naturally calm down the sympathetic nervous system. They promote the function of the parasympathetic nervous system which helps your body to relax.
- Omega 3 Fatty Acids are also helpful during your pregnancy.
Pregnancy may bring about a sudden change in you and your lifestyle. It’s natural to feel a little anxious about it, but now you know how to cope with anxiety during your pregnancy.
If excessive anxiety is significantly interfering with your day-to-day functioning and becoming all-consuming, it’s time to consult a doctor and find a better way to deal with it.