Women's and Children's Health Network
Mental health in pregnancy and new parenthood
Pregnancy can be a joyful time for most people but it can also raise anxieties with a new baby about to arrive and the worries this may bring with changes to family life.
It can also be a time where tensions increase between partners.
The current COVID-19 pandemic could add to the anxiety for many reasons – concern for your own health and that of your baby, financial stress or the impact of current restrictions.
Things you may wish to consider for keeping yourself well include:
Information for new fathers
It is a challenging time for partners as many hospitals have access/visiting restrictions in place, which can be very distressing. Support for your partner in labour may or may not be possible in the postnatal ward, there may also be other restrictions as social distancing rules are implemented.
When you go home life as a new parent will be different because of COVID-19, which includes restrictions on family visits and may mean you have to provide more of the support than usual.
In infant mental health, it is well known that it takes a village to raise a baby but at the moment it has to be an extremely tiny village and you may be it but you are not alone!!
Associate Professor Richard Fletcher from Newcastle University in NSW has been working with fathers for a long time and runs a program called SMS4dads (www.sms4dads.com). SMS4dads provides new fathers with information and connections to online services through their mobile phones. It provides great ideas for men about pregnancy, their partners' feelings and connecting to your new baby.
Associate Professor Richard Fletcher has also written a letter to all new or soon-to-be fathers, which includes guidance and useful information and support services – download your copy now.
last modified: 01 May 2020