Post-natal mental health needs addressing

With more than a third of British mothers experiencing mental health issues related to parenthood, a recent survey has shown that two-thirds of the affected mothers sought professional help – suffering from conditions such as acute stress, severe anxiety and postpartum depression.

The online survey of 1,800 British parents was conducted by the BBC’s Radio 5 and YouGov.

It also revealed that, in comparison, 17% of fathers had experienced similar issues but it also found that 15% of mothers and 25% fathers said they did not receive any emotional support for their parenting at all.

Many of the parents surveyed reported feeling criticised by many people with mothers saying their parents were the most critical of their parenting (26%), followed by their spouse/partner (24%) and other family members (18%). About 14% said they had been criticised by strangers, compared with 5% of the 800 fathers who responded to the survey.

New parents can experience troubles in the workplace as well. About 30% of mothers who responded said they had felt discriminated against at work through being a parent, compared with 14% of working fathers.

Counselling for post-natal issues is available from a variety of sources and the National Council for Hypnotherapy has more than 1,800 clinical hypnotherapists across the UK who can help with such issues in a confidential, encouraging and non-invasive way, without resorting to medication.

Both pre-natal and post-natal issues can be alleviated through hypnotherapy and the NCH says hypnosis can ‘help overcome fear and anxiety around conception, parenting or birth itself. It can reduce stress and anxiety, boost confidence to be a parent and give mothers a feeling of control’.

The NCH adds that hypnosis (known as hypnobirthing in this instance) reduces the risk of postnatal depression and babies born to mothers who have practiced hypnosis and deep relaxation techniques during labour may also be calmer, sleep better and feed better.

“There are now also a number of midwives in the UK training as hypnotherapists, having seen the profound difference hypnotherapy in mothers who are birthing their babies calmly and feeling wonderfully in control,” says the NCH.

Hypnotherapy has been proven to help with mental issues like stress, anxiety and depression – even for those who have not been part of a hypnobirthing experience.

The NCH advises: “It is important you choose a programme you feel comfortable with, and a hypnotherapist with whom you are able to talk openly. Some fears relating to pregnancy and birth can be intimate and personal; it is crucial that you feel comfortable and relaxed.”

To find a suitable NCH therapist near you, simply click here and follow the instructions.

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