Being home alone with a new baby in the middle of winter can be quite a challenge for even the most supported parent. Here is a link to screening resources for postpartum anxiety and depression, available at the National Child and Maternal Health Education Program.
In addition to treatment, there are some things you can do that may help you feel better:
1. Connect with other moms.
Look for a moms’ group in your community or online. These groups may give you the chance to learn from others who are going through or have gone through the same thing and to share your own feelings. Postpartum Support International (PSI) can help you locate groups in your area. Postpartum Progress® offers a private online community so you can connect with other moms no matter where you live.
2. Make time for yourself.
Do something for you, like getting out of the house, or taking a hot bath without interruption. If you can, have your partner, a family member, or babysitter watch the baby regularly and go visit a friend or run an errand.
3. Do something you enjoy.
Whether it is listening to music, reading a book, or watching a favorite movie, take a bit of time each day to do something you enjoy.
4. Be realistic.
You don’t have to do everything. You don’t have to have the “perfect” home. Just do what you can and leave the rest.
5. Ask for help.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help from family and friends, whether it’s caring for the baby or doing household chores.
6. Rest when the baby rests.
Sleep is just as important for you as it is for the baby. Sleep when the baby sleeps, during naps and at night.
7. Be with others.
Seek out other adults, like family and friends, who can provide comfort and company. Regularly create a special time for you and your partner or for you and a friend to be together.