Anxiety Disorder and Pregnancy/Childcare

Updated on June 24, 2010
F.K. asks from Hayward, CA
6 answers

Anyone else out there have an anxiety disorder and either is or has been pregnant? I realize every pregnancy is unique and that goes for people with this disorder, but I'm curious to know what some peoples' experience was/is like. Was the anxiety worse, better, or the same? What about during labor? I'm hoping the saying that it's never as bad as we imagine is accurate. Thanks!

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answers from Philadelphia on

I have panic attacks and depression. I actually got a little worse during the first trimester, but as soon as the 2nd trimester started I felt great. I was really anxious about labor and maybe getting a panic attack. But nothing like that happened. You are so in the moment during the labor process that your body doesn't have time for anxiety I guess. I had no panic attacks before, during or after delivery. Good luck!



answers from San Francisco on

My pregnancy wasn't complicated by the baby but it definitely took a toll on me physically. I stopped taking my medications (with dr. oversight) prior to getting pregnant and I was worried as to how I'd be without them while going through this big change. I found that things weren't so bad. I'd have some bad days, but walking helped. I wasn't ever scared about labor. I viewed it as something that would happen inevitably so approached it like a task that had to be done and ended up having an amazing labor - filled so much joy and love and laughter. (I did have an epidural.) I was more concerned about the postpartum and prior to having my baby had scheduled an appt with my therapist for a week after my baby was born so I knew I had a check-in to help me assess how things were going with me. I also found a breastfeeding support group which was more like a new mommy support group. A couple of those women are some of my closest friends today but the group as a whole helped ease me through some crazy anxiety in those first few months. If breastfeeding isn't your thing, there are new mom support groups (some hospitals offer them). Get the information prior to having your baby. It's been a couple years now and I'm finding myself much more balanced than I ever was.

Good luck to you!!


answers from Dallas on

It's never as bad as I imagine! Anxiety runs in our family. All I can tell you is to keep fighting it. Find every way you can. My kids are grown and I am much better than I used to be so I do believe it can get better.

I have lived through things I never thought possible. Childbirth was not one of them.......truly, it wasn't so bad. Don't listen to everyone's battle stories.

You'll be okay!



answers from Sacramento on

I don't want to minimize your anxiety disorder because I know there are all sorts of causes for people having this disorder. However, I do want to share what I learned about myself with it, because I think this is something most Drs. wouldn't even pick up on. I never had to get medication or anything like that, but would have occasional spells of anxiety to the point where I thought I was going to die immediately. The only thing I could do for it was to take a brisk walk until I calmed down. Finally I realized after treating a sinus infection flare up that I had been suffering from a deep chronic sinus condition for years. When I got rid of all the accumulated congestion for that, the anxiety attacks also went away. What I did to get rid of the congestion was to make a home made saline solution and several times a day I irrigated my nasal passages. It took me several months of religiously doing that to get all the congestion cleared, but it was well worth the time and effort. If you want my 'recipe' for the solution and complete instructions for using it, send me a private message and I'll be more than happy to respond.



answers from Sacramento on

I have had anxiety all my life and have had 2 children. There isn't much you can do pharmaceutically about it when you are pg so I recommend other ways to deal with it like yoga, deep breathing, possibly acupunture, etc. It does help when you know the reason you are having the anxiety (hormones) and that does help when you have an episode. Also, talk it out with someone when you are feeling it accutely. As for labor, I found that knowing EVERYTHING that they were going to do beforehand was key to keeping my anxiety down. I read everything I could get my hands on and watched tv shows about birth constantly. That way, I was able to hope for the best and prepare for the worst. I am and always have been an information junkie and a planner. Thats what worked for me.


answers from Dallas on

Yep, I'm even on disability for my anxiety. I'm now 36 weeks pregnant. Initially, the anxiety got better in the first and second trimesters. As the second one ended and the third started, I started breaking down and my doc put me back on Prozac to help it....Dr mentioned having some xanax while in labor...I don't know though. It'll be okay :)

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