Looking after your mental health
The current Coronavirus (COVID-19), can be scary and can affect our mental health and well-being. Pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period often brings with it added anxiety and concerns about your mental health and well-being.
What do we mean by mental health? Mental Health is...
How healthy our mind is and how well it works. ’It’s about our thoughts and our feelings and how we deal with the ups and downs of life’ World Health Organisation
‘Good mental health is just as important as physical health. It means feeling positive about yourself, being able to cope with everyday pressures and being able to form and maintain relationships’ NI Department of Health
Stress and anxiety
What is stress? ‘When we think the demands placed on us exceed our ability to cope’ Anxiety UK
Tips for dealing with stress:
Get some fresh air and exercise – research shows that exercise is a great way to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety
• Don’t let problems mount up - try breaking your problems into smaller chunks and deal with them one-by-one
• Try to get rest if and when you can
• Try some basic relaxation exercises
• Be kind to yourself – don’t try to do too much and give yourself credit for what you achieve
• Be assertive – you can’t please everyone all the time so sometimes it’s ok to say ‘no’
• Ask for help – it is not a sign of weakness and this is probably one time in your life when you really need it! You will find lots of specific practical examples to manage your mood in the second half of this booklet. Managing day to day stresses helps you maintain good mental health and may also prevent mental ill-health.