A Mother of an Opportunity
Sunday, May 14th is Mother's Day. Traditionally, it
is a chance to recognize the significant and influential
women in our lives whether they be mothers, grandmothers,
step mothers or even den mothers.
When spoken of, pregnancy
and motherhood are often defined as times of overwhelming
joy and emotional highs. The miracle of life, the first
time holding your son or daughter, the bond between
mother and child. In many cases, however, the good
times are not so good and pregnancy and childbirth
can be defined by stress and even depression.
According to 2003 Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring
System survey, 23 percent of women in North Carolina
said that pregnancy was a very hard time for them mentally
or emotionally. Changes in physical appearance,
hormonal adjustments, financial worries, fears associated
with child birth and strain on their relationships
are only a few of the factors causing stress and impacting
the mental health of pregnant women.
Oftentimes, similar or worse feelings follow the birth
of a child. Nearly half of North Carolina women experienced
some level of depression following birth, and one-in-five
described their condition as moderately to very depressed. The
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
estimates that nationally, 70 to 85 percent of women
experience the baby blues after childbirth. The
more severe form, clinically diagnosed postpartum depression,
affects about 10 percent.
If you know someone who is pregnant or has recently
given birth and is having a difficult time, Mother's
Day presents an opportunity to help. Whether they be
a friend, family member, co-worker or most importantly
your partner, this is a time to reach out. Offer a
listening ear or shoulder to cry on, send a note, cook
them dinner once a week, let them know they are not
alone, or help them find a doctor or trained counselor
to talk to. What is simple for you, might be just what
Pregnancy and motherhood can potentially be the most
gratifying times in a woman'’s life. Conversely,
they can be some of the most stressful, even depressing.
So before you send flowers or a box of candy, ask yourself
if there is anything else you can do.
Happy Mothers Day.
here for more information and to order
free educational materials.
here for information on Mental Health Awareness
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