Having a baby changes everything, and it comes with many obstacles; specifically, during pregnancy, labor and delivery, and the postpartum period, there are many areas of support that should be offered by healthcare providers, friends, and family to ensure a healthy mom and baby.
Having a healthy pregnancy is critical to having a healthy baby. Early and regular prenatal care will improve a mom’s chances of having a pregnancy free of complications. Inadequate prenatal care is often cited as a risk factor for low birthweight, a top cause of infant health problems. Moms should schedule a prenatal visit as soon as they know they are pregnant, or around 8 weeks.
During the prenatal period, expecting mothers will need educational support to inform them in areas that may be unfamiliar. Some of the things women cope with during pregnancy include:
- Managing stress
- Maintaining a healthy diet
- Avoiding harmful prescriptions, chemicals or foods
- Recognizing warning signs that something may be wrong
- Preparing for labor and delivery
There are a number of additional services and support programs offered by healthcare organizations specifically built for the prenatal period. These services can include mental health and wellness, genetic counseling, breastfeeding support, nutritionists, physical therapy, and early parenting classes. Moms can seek out the additional support in areas they feel they need it most.
Support During Life with a Newborn
What does that cry mean? Do I wake my baby to feed him? When should my baby sleep through the night? When can we safely go out in public?
As intuitive as motherhood may be, there are so many questions that an unexperienced mother won’t know the answer to. Moms need the support of knowledgeable resources to help guide them to care for their baby.
Pediatricians, health plans, and healthcare providers are valuable resources to provide moms with the professional guidance they need to have a healthy baby.
Some resources that moms commonly need include:
- How to baby-proof their home
- Safety for baby, both indoors and outdoors
- Milestones for baby, including motor skills, education, cognitive developments, and physical growth
- How to recognize and cope with sickness
Postpartum depression is a serious mood disorder that can affect women after childbirth. Approximately 70-80% of women will experience baby blues at minimum, with many more struggling to deal with postpartum depression. Postpartum depression affects all races, ethnicities, cultures, education and socioeconomic levels, making it a very serious health concern. It can also affect fathers and adoptive parents.
Social and Emotional Support
Support from family and friends can help a new mother deal with stress. Through receiving help from trustworthy people, confidence and self-esteem are boosted. Not only that, but a social circle of peers who may be going through the same struggles is the perfect way to find solutions to challenges.
Stress, anxiety, depression, attachment problems, and issues associated with adjusting to a new lifestyle are all emotional tolls that new parents may experience. It’s important that women know that they have a network of support available to them for emotional obstacles. Doctors, obstetricians, child health nurses, counselors, psychologists, and psychiatrists may all be able to help. Spouses, friends, and family can support new mom during this time by understanding the changes she is going through and offer a helping hand for her to deal with these emotional challenges.
A study by the University of Chicago discovered that stressful events can decrease the amount of social support a person receives. This could be because stressful events tend to cause people to withdraw from relationships and put less effort into the very thing that they need most. Moms (especially new moms) need to remember to surround themselves and their baby with the loving support they need.
Millions of moms and babies are in need of a support network to provide guidance and information, so they can better manage their health and life at home with their new family. We can deliver by offering them safe, easy to follow, personalized guidance. We are stacking GoMo Health’s tower of Concierge Care® solutions that are reforming the healthcare journey for Mother and Baby.