Common causes of anxiety in pregnancy

1 in 10 women experience mental health problems during pregnancy, here is our helpful advice on what you can do

Anxiety in pregnancy: Spot the signs

If you are suffering with anxiety in pregnancy here’s a guide to what help there is

Pregnancy anxiety 474

Pregnancy hormones do some weird and wonderful things to your body, but it’s not just your physical health that’s affected. Hormones can also unsettle your mental health from time to time, so looking after your emotional wellbeing in pregnancy is equally important.

Here’s what you need to know about the common causes of anxiety in pregnancy and what you should do.

First, it’s perfectly normal if you find yourself worrying about any of these questions and concerns that mums-to-be often have:

  • I’m scared about giving birth
  • Will my baby be healthy?
  • Will I be a good mum?
  • Could previous pregnancy problems happen again?
  • Have I eaten/drunk anything that could harm my baby?
  • Will my partner and I still have a strong relationship of our own?

Likewise, it’s also not uncommon for the physical effects of pregnancy to get you down.

Sound familiar?

  • I feel sick all the time
  • I’m so tired I can’t get anything done
  • I feel I’m losing control of my body
  • I feel bloated and fat
  • Will my body ever be the same again?

It’s normal to worry about these things, but if these feelings won’t go away, it can be a sign of something more serious so never feel embarrassed or ashamed about feeling like this. It’s also important to tell your midwife about any previous emotional wellbeing issues you may have experienced.

What to do if your pregnancy worries are getting you down

Try to keep the worries in perspective. Try not to let your worries consume you. Remind yourself that all pregnant women worry about similar things and know that in time, your new baby will make all the worries worth it.

Get the facts
It’s easy to fear the unknown so read up on the facts about what’s worrying you. It will allow you to prepare for what will happen – trusted, reliable sources of information can help you to manage your expectations and ease your fears.

  • Break the issues down
  • Deal with issues one by one and try not to let all issues build up in your mind.
  • Take the one that worries you the most and try and tackle that first.
  • Talk to someone

If you feel your pregnancy worries are starting to get you down and making you feel anxious, make sure you talk to someone.

If you don’t feel your partner will understand, talk to family and friends you can trust and identify with, and who may also have young children. If none of the above feel like an option, your midwife or GP will be able to offer you support to help manage your feelings.

Warning signals
Get in touch with someone who can help if you are:

Finding any physical or mental effort tiring or exhausting

  • Crying all the time
  • Unable to enjoy anything that used to give you pleasure
  • Convinced you are, or you will be a terrible mother and that you do not deserve your baby
  • Thinking of harming yourself of your baby
  • Convinced ‘they’ are going to take your baby away

If you can’t get to talk to your midwife and are struggling to cope you can talk to a Tommy’s midwife free of charge from 9-5 Monday to Friday on: 0800 0147 800. The charity’s midwives are also trained in miscarriage support.

Common causes of anxiety in pregnancy