Top 10 Pro Tips to Cope with Mood Swings during Pregnancy
Emotional upheaval is part and parcel of the pregnancy journey. Your pregnancy is incomplete without having to go through the roller coaster ride of mood swings.
Oscillating between happy highs and lull lows is normal during pregnancy. In fact, mood swings during pregnancy are much like PMS.
So if you have experienced mood swings before your periods you know what you’re going to be dealing with!
The good news for all mamas is that mood swings are temporary. They will go away. Soon you’ll feel like your own level-headed self again.
Till that time you’ve got to hang in there and roll with the ride!
Thankfully, there are some mood-mellowing tips to help you out in your journey.
We discuss everything about mood swings and give you the top 10 pro tips to cope with mood swings during pregnancy.
The surge in hormone levels
One of the big reasons for mood swings during pregnancy is a rapid change in the dynamic duo hormones—-estrogen and progesterone.
Estrogen is associated with the brain’s chemical serotonin. This hormone is also known as the “happy” hormone.
But the connection between the hormone and happiness is not straightforward. Any imbalance or fluctuations in this neurotransmitter leads to emotional dysregulation.
Anxiety and irritability in particular are associated with estrogen changes.
An increase in Progesterone levels is connected to relaxation. During pregnancy, this hormone tells the muscles to relax to prevent premature contractions of the uterus.
Relaxation hormone sounds nice but for some women, it also means fatigue and sadness.
So this sudden surge in estrogen and progesterone is the perfect recipe for all your mama-meltdowns!
Emotional upheaval is at its peak, especially during the first trimester of pregnancy.
Many women experience morning sickness at any time of the day. As much as it impacts a woman’s physical well being it impacts her emotional state as well. The feeling of nausea can be triggered by the slightest of things.
The fear of not knowing when you might start to feel nauseated and end up throwing up in public and the stress and anxiety associated with it can lead to mood swings during pregnancy.
Further, women who have prior experience of miscarriage or failed pregnancy might go through a tough time dealing with the stress and feel irritable and anxious all the time.
As you come closer and closer to your due date you might experience the jitters running down you. Reading about everything that could possibly go wrong during delivery adds to the stress and causes major emotional imbalance.
The physical changes that you often hear about a woman going through during pregnancy start to occur in the second trimester. You can see your belly grow bigger little by little.
Soon enough you will grow out of your current size. You will have to go on a maternity shopping spree.
Some women enjoy this new change in their bodies as they no longer have to worry about squeezing their bellies to look fit.
On the other hand, some women might not like this transformation. Women who have had body image issues prior to getting pregnant are more likely to have a difficult time adjusting to these changes.
As you progress in your pregnancy your body will go through many changes. Sleeping comfortably at night will only get difficult. Lack of proper sleep and fatigue will contribute to your mood swings.
Tips to manage pregnancy mood swings
First care-self care!
Prioritize your need over others. Say no to a plan if you don’t feel like going. Give time to yourself to do what you like.
Take hot baths, or just Netflix and chill in your extra comfy clothes. Indulge in your hobbies like painting, reading, or doodling. They are a good source of relieving stress.
Talk it out!
Talk to your partner, your family, or friends about your feelings when you’re feeling low. Tell them what you’re going through and get that feeling of heavy and sinking heart out of your way.
Avoid reading scary pregnancy books and blogs.
It is rightly said that too much information can sometimes be harmful. Put away books that narrate horror stories of pregnancy-related complications. Your experience need not be like one of those.
Don’t go on googling about every little thing. Keep yourself away from unnecessary knowledge, especially in an age where both information and misinformation are free and plentiful. Talk to your health care provider directly if you are having any doubts
Join an online mom’s group for emotional and mental support
Talking to people who are going through exactly what you’re going through can be helpful. When you hear about the struggles that many other moms like you are going through you feel less alienated.
Take a birth course to take off your fear of labor and delivery
This can help you feel more confident about labor and help you prepare for what’s next to come.
Keep yourself calm at all times. Indulge in various breathing techniques to soothe your mood swings.
Listen to peaceful music, light some scented candles or diffusers and lie down. Close your eyes and think of happy and beautiful things.
Releasing sweat and toxins can be one of the best ways of calming you down. Go for slow walks or jog in a park. Being close to nature will give peace to your mind and body
See a mental health professional
Reach out to an expert if you’re unable to handle your mood swings. Talking can help find solutions to the most difficult of situations.
Taking a good 8 hours of sleep is necessary to rejuvenate your mind and body. If you’re not able to sleep at a stretch then take small naps throughout the day. and take my word on this, a good night’s sleep will make you less irritable and help you cope with your mood swings during pregnancy a lot better.
Pay extra attention to what you eat. What you take in will reflect out. Eat healthy to stay healthy.
A healthy well-balanced diet can affect your mental and physical well-being positively. Do not feel guilty about having cheat meals.
Satisfying your craving with that sinful bucket of ice cream once in a while is Okay!
When to seek professional help?
Sometimes you need to seek professional advice to help you cope with these turbulent times. You don’t have to be clinically depressed to see a therapist.
They are there to help people cope with major life changes. You can see a counselor when you feel too overwhelmed.
You can make a visit to them when you think your mood swings are so extreme that they are affecting your day-to-day routine.
Having mood swings during pregnancy is one thing but depression altogether is a different experience. If you’re unsure of your state of mind and feel that you might be depressed, it is wise to consult your health care provider at the earliest.
Depression and anxiety are not the same as mood swings. This can also increase your risk of experiencing postpartum depression or anxiety after pregnancy. This will affect your health as well as your newborn baby’s health.
Consult a therapist/counselor/ your doctor in case you witness any of the following symptoms.
- Feeling extremely sad, irritable, or angry suddenly.
- Feeling restless or breathless.
- Feeling extremely anxious, fearful, or panicky.
- Drastic changes in your eating habit, experience of insomnia or absent feeling of hunger or stress eating.
- Extreme fatigues and laziness. Never in the mood to do anything.
- Heart palpitations or muscle tension.
- Persistent scary and disturbing thoughts like suicidal thoughts.
Though Mood swings are very much a part of the pregnancy phase they can be really annoying.
But if you feel like your mood swings are getting worse or you experience any of the above symptoms or simply don’t feel yourself talk to your doctor or your loved ones immediately.
Taking action to safeguard your mental health is important. This will give you a pleasurable pregnancy experience. Not to mention, it will also give your baby the best possible start.
Don’t let your body and mind suffer just because mood swings are normal and everyone experiences them. Your experience is your own. It is unique to you. What you may be going through might be bigger than just pregnancy mood swings. Seeking help can help you get through this. So, please speak up! You don’t need to suffer in silence!
There is a lot of care you should take in terms of skincare also, here’s the list of skincare ingredients you must avoid during pregnancy.
Have a happy, healthy, and sound pregnancy!