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Natural Awakenings Tucson

Becoming A Mother

May 01, 2024 09:00AM ● By Ana Tanase, MD
Transitioning from being a woman to being a mother is another step in the book of life that you cannot prepare for entirely by reading books or going to classes. Some of it has to do with culture, religion or traditions in your family. In the past, new mothers were surrounded by family, their community where they grew up and had a good social support network. In our days, people move often, new parents live far away from family and the places where they grew up and had friends. Some mothers are too busy with work or demands of the new family to even think about what will come next, while others look for answers on the internet, books, classes, birth doulas or pediatricians.

Many mothers that have gone through this experience don’t think they were well prepared for this new chapter in life and struggle with depression, anxiety and loss of identity. All these feelings can affect the attachment with the new baby. So, what can an expectant mother do to have a smoother transition to motherhood?

Self-care is very important and should start as early as possible. That includes paying attention to food and nutrition, avoiding toxins in food, water, cosmetics, workplace or at home. After that comes sleep and rest, allowing 8 to 10 hours of rest per day.

Taking care of emotions is easier said than done. Women that are more sensitive, are under stress, go through emotion rollercoasters or have a diagnosis of a mental health condition should try to find time, be aware and address these emotions. Emotions trigger hormones in our bodies that go through the placenta and bathe the baby in a stress hormones soup. Those infants will be more fussy, harder to console and will make the mother-baby relationship harder. Finding a good therapist and allowing time to do things that are enjoyable—walking in nature, gardening, listening to music, going to a yoga class, meeting with a friend, spending time with a pet—are some suggestions.

Finally, relationships can make a big difference. Finding the people in your life that matter, asking for support or to be physically present for you around birth and after that could make life easier. Involve your partner in the process, discuss what to do if you are too tired, too sick or feel down, allow them to help with feedings, diaper changes and being present with the infant so that you can take a break.

In the end, remember this transition is a natural process. Trust that your body knows what to do, let your fears melt and be ready to welcome a new life and a new you.

Ana Tanase, MD, FAAP, ABOIM, FAIHM is an Integrative Pediatrician practicing at TMCOne La Canada. Connect at 520-909-7165.

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TMCOne La Canada Office - 10390 N La Caada Dr Ste 110, Oro Valley, AZ

Holistic pediatrician, board certified in pediatrics and Integrative Medicine, provides integrative medicine consults, primary care services, second opinions. Visits include personalized ... Read More »