Your Mental Health
Looking after your mental health during the Covid-19 crisis if you are pregnant or a new parent
With all the news and developments around Covid-19 (Coronavirus) recently, it is a stressful time for everyone.
If you are expecting a baby or looking after a young child, you may be feeling particularly worried and anxious.
It’s important that you make sure you look after your mental health and wellbeing, especially if you are isolating away from friends and family. Support is particularly important when you or your partner are pregnant or have a young baby. Think about who you can call if you’re not coping well.
If you or someone you are concerned about are experiencing a mental health crisis
- Dial 999 if you have seriously harmed yourself
- Contact mental health services in Lancashire and South Cumbria (opens in new window)
- Attend accident and Emergency at your local hospital
- Call Samaritans on 116 123 (free to call and will not appear on the phone bill).
Some things that you might consider doing to support your mental health are:
- Discuss any worries with your midwife or health visitor. Contact details will be in your maternity notes or your baby’s red book
- If you are already under the care of a specialist perinatal mental health midwife, specialist health visitor or a mental health worker you can get in touch to discuss your situation
- Try self-help resources such as apps, websites and books. See the resources provided below
- Join an online support group for expectant and new parents or one that is specifically for people with mental health needs via social media. See the resources provided below
- We've created an information sheet which you may find useful during this time (opens in new window).
- If you are a new father you might find this information sheet useful (opens in new window).
- Or if you are new mother you might find this useful (opens in new window).
- Find useful information about preparing for birth (opens in new window), becoming a mum (opens in new window) or becoming a parent (opens in new window).
- During your pregnancy and first year of having a baby, as well as feelings of joy and excitment, you can also feel anxiety. Improving Access to Psychological Therapy (IAPT) can provide support during this time (opens in new window).
The latest advice from the UK Government is available online.
It’s important you follow the most recent advice to keep you and your family safe and make the right decisions for your family. You can view the most recent government information here (opens in new window).
If you have appointments with midwives, health visitors, doctors or mental health support, it is important to keep these. Some may now be offered as telephone calls rather than face-to-face. If you are worried about attending appointments in person, or unsure if they are going ahead, contact your provider to get the latest update. The Royal College of Midwives website has a list of FAQs that you may find useful (opens in new window).
If you are worried about your mental health, you can get in touch with a health professional such as your usual GP, midwife, health visitor or mental health worker.
Postnatal stay at home plan
The postnatal period is one of great change and transition, especially during the current climate. This plan will help you think about yours and your baby’s needs in the postnatal period ahead of time, to ensure you get the support and rest you need and
to enable you to prioritise connecting with your baby and recovering.
Health visitor services
Resources for self-help
- Mind have lots of free self-help activities available (opens in new window), as well as tools for coping with the mental health impacts of COVID-19 and self-isolation (opens in new window)
- The NHS Apps Library has a list of Mental Health apps (opens in new window)
- NHS Audio Guide on stress, anxiety and depression (opens in new window).
Useful online information and telephone support resources
- The Maternal Mental Health Alliance (opens in new window) has information and links on supporting perinatal mental health during the COVID-19 crisis available online
- PANDAS (Pre And Post Natal Depression Advice and Support( (opens in new window) Call free on 0808 1961 776. A Facebook page is also available offering inspiration, motivation and news and they also run a Facebook support group specifically for fathers (opens in new window)
- Shout is the UK’s first free 24/7 text service for anyone in crisis anytime, anywhere (opens in new window). It is a place to go if you’re struggling to cope and you need immediate help via text message
- SANEline is a national out-of-hours telephone helpline (opens in new window). Call them on 0300 304 7000. SANEline offer emotional support and information for people affected by mental health problems
- APP Network provide support to women and families affected by post-partum psychosis (opens in new window) and offer online peer support forums
- Refuge support women and children who are experiencing domestic violence (opens in new window). They provide a freephone 24 hour helpline 0808 2000 247 and provide information relating to COVID-19 (opens in new window).