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Don’t forget about caring for yourself as a new mum

04 October 2017

Maternity Perinatal mental health
While you are busy, looking after your baby as a new mum, it is important not to forget to look after your own needs. Midwife Jo Jury shares her number one tip.

All mums know this – new babies can be demanding. They know what they want (milk, sleep, cuddles) and how to get it (cry). This can make it hard to take the time to look after yourself.

Looking after yourself as a new mum is important and helps you be the best mum you can be.

Consider this – your body has just gone through some serious rigours and needs to recover not only from labour or surgery but also from nine months of carrying a newborn.

Therefore my number one tip to looking after yourself is to take plenty of time to rest and relax.

This probably sounds easier to do than it actually is, as newborn babies can interrupt your regular sleep patterns.

Make time to rest and relax

To make time for rest and relaxing, I suggest:

  • Have short sleeps or rest times during the day when you baby is asleep (don’t worry the washing can wait)
  • Allow your support people to do the housework, such as washing, cooking and caring for other children or pets
  • Do only the essential chores until you feel rested and strong (hold off dusting the blinds)
  • Limit the number of visitors and phone calls during the first few weeks
  • If using cloth nappies, hire a nappy service for the first few week or use disposable nappies

Rest is important for you physically but also emotionally – so follow these steps or find your own ways to get some downtime.

St John of God Health Care Joanne Jury
Joanne Jury - Midwife

Jo Jury is an experienced midwife at St John of God Bendigo Hospital. She has more than eight years’ experience as a midwife and has a particular interest in perinatal mental health and all aspects of midwifery care and early parenting.