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Be good to yourself

(Estimated reading time: 2 min)

It’s not easy being a new parent. Taking care of yourself is crucial. It makes you feel better and helps you take better care of your baby, too.

Here’s where to start:

Know that becoming a parent is not easy, and others are struggling too, though they might not show it.

Figure out who is in your support network and ask for help. Have a few answers ready for when people ask what you need. There is so much going on, that no one with a new baby should be saying “nothing.”

Make plans and socialize with others. Schedule weekly or monthly get-togethers and stick to them.

Get out of the house every day and talk to people, even if it’s a neighbor over the hedge or a stranger in the check-out line.

Talk about your struggles with a close friend or support group. They will be more likely to share theirs, too.

Ask your friends or support group for a break when you need it – a phone call or a visit when you are feeling overwhelmed can be a great recharger.

Remember to take good care of yourself and prioritize your needs too. Just 15 minutes of dedicated time can make a big difference. Showers and housecleaning are not “me” time.

Exercise or walk as soon as your doctor or care provider approves activity. Babies love movement, and so do we!

Eat well, choosing healthy foods that are easy to prepare. Use a local grocery or meal delivery service when you need it. Suggest gift certificates to those places to friends and family members wanting to get you a gift.

Rest and sleep as much as you can. Even if you don’t “feel tired” and you have a million things to do. New moms need way more rest than they think they do.

If you are doing all of these things regularly and you are still struggling, it’s time to get extra help. Things can get better with professional help!

Perinatal Support Washington has a toll free telephone support line with same-day callback at 1-888-404-7763.

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