Advice and Info
For mums- & dads-to-be pregnancy can be a time of excitement and anticipation.
However, for some, it is not uncommon for some natural feelings of worry and stress to persist and develop into depression or anxiety or another mental health problem.
In fact, Mind report that as many as 1 in 5 women will experience a mental health problem during pregnancy or in the year after giving birth and according to Barnardo’s:
- 61 per cent of British parents describe parenting as ‘fairly’ or ‘very difficult’
- 94 per cent of parents say it is helpful to talk to another person about parenting problems
Don’t “keep mum”
Looking after your own mental health as a mum-to-be is a key building block of your child’s future physical, emotional and social development.
Ways to look after yourself include building a support network, for example, meeting up with other new mothers and fathers either online or offline to share your experiences and concerns. Finding the time to take care of yourself with a new baby can feel like a challenge, but making small changes such as keeping active, trying to get some sleep and taking time to unwind can also help. But always seek professional help from a GP, midwife or health visitor if you are concerned you might be be struggling.
- Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust have produced an Early Years Toolkit, with lots of tips and advice for parents and carers of babies and young children. Here you will find information about factors affecting children’s development and what you can do to help, as well as common problems you may see and what to do.
- Family Lives (formerly known as Parentline) is a major UK charity providing online and confidential telephone advice and support to parents on a wide range of topics, including pregnancy and baby, toddlerhood, issues affecting school-aged children and young people throughout their school lives, looking after a child or young person with special educational needs, family life, fostering and adoption, divorce and separation. Family Lives have also created an extensive set of videos as part of Parentchannel.tv, which can be found via their Youtube Channel here.
- Mumsnet and Netmums are both established online communities for parents to network and pool their knowledge, advice and support.
- The health visiting service in Berkshire offers professional advice and support to families with children aged 0 – 5 years. The school nursing service in Berkshire offers professional advice and support to families with children aged 5 – 19 years.
- Parents can sign up for free on the NHS Start4Life website to receive weekly emails and videos to help them navigate the world of pregnancy, birth and parenthood.
- Keeping babies and children safe is a big concern for all parents. The Child Accident Prevention Trust has some excellent resources and tips.
- Home-Start Bracknell have been supporting struggling families living in Bracknell Forest for over 25 years. Trained and supervised volunteers visit families with young children in the comfort of their own home, providing practical and emotional support. Families supported may be facing issues such as isolation, mental health, disability, poverty