Tips For Carer's
Caring for someone with perinatal (during pregnancy or after birth) depression or anxiety can be confusing, stressful and demanding. Whilst parents, families, partners and friends play a big part in helping their loved ones.
Here are some tips to help carer's:
- Focus on providing practical help and gentle emotional support. Try and listen when your loved one expresses difficult or uncomfortable feelings or thoughts without jumping in to ‘fix it’, minimise or ‘make it better.’
- Encourage your partner, friend or family member to open up to their GP, midwife, obstetrician or child health nurse – or call PANDA’s National Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Helpline 1300 726 306
- The journey through perinatal depression and anxiety is often unexpected, traumatic and unwanted. However, many parents who consider themselves ‘recovered’ speak of a strength and resilience that they did not previously possess. Take comfort in the knowledge that working through this together has the possibility of bringing you closer.
- Perinatal depression and anxiety affects every area of wellbeing: motivation, decision making and view of self and others. It is probably not the best time to make big life decisions about things like your relationship, career or house.
- Looking after your own physical, emotional and mental health is crucial if you hope to provide ongoing support to your partner, friend or family member with perinatal depression or anxiety. Exercise, a healthy diet, limiting alcohol consumption and sufficient sleep all make a difference.
- Seek and accept offers of practical help from family or friends.
The PANDA National Helpline also provides information and emotional support to carers 1300 726 306 (M-F 10am – 5pm) or download our Caring for Someone with Perinatal Anxiety & Depression FactsheetPerinatal Anxiety & Depression Factsheet