Your health visitor has specialist training in identifying and supporting parents with postnatal depression and anxiety. They are able to come to your home and help you make sense of how you feel. They will spend time with you and help you work out a plan to help you ‘get ahead of postnatal depression’. This may mean a referral to your GP for further assessment or a referral to a more specialist professional in the Community Perinatal Team or the Wellbeing Team.
At other times just having the health visitor come on a regular basis to your home offering ‘listening visits’ may help you realise you are not alone and enable you to make small but positive steps towards lifting your low mood. These visits will enable you to work together, exploring the problem areas in your life, set goals and together find a new way to move forward and enjoy life as a parent.
Health visitors also work closely with Family Support from the Family Centres and they offer many activities that will allow you to have some quality time with your baby in a supportive nurturing environment.
The health visitor may also refer you to a specialist group for supporting women with postnatal depression; guide you to online self-help courses or charitable organisations offering support groups for women with PND.
However hard it is, reach out and ask for help from your family, friends and professionals. You are not alone (although often you may feel you are) , one day at a time and eventually the depression will lift and you will enjoy your life again.
- Specialist Community Perinatal Team
- Hertfordshire Wellbeing Service
- Families First
- NHS Choices
- Mood Zone
- Government Website
- Every Mind Matters
- Mental Health Foundation
- Action for Happiness
- Mental Health Helplines
- Rethink Mental Illness
- Facebook PMH
- Anxiety UK
- Postpartum Psychosis