4 Essential Self-Care Tips New Mothers Should Practice

Becoming a mother for the first time is a magnificent and incredible experience. There’s no feeling comparable to birthing and being responsible for the life of a tiny human. That’s probably why many moms tend to put themselves last on their priority list and devote nearly all their time and energy to caring for their little one.

woman sitting in white ceramic bath tube filled with bubbles and reading a book

If you can relate to this sentiment as your world now revolves around your bundle of joy, perhaps you need to look at your situation in a new light. While being a dedicated and hands-on mother is laudable, it’s worth pointing out that making time to care for yourself is equally praiseworthy. That’s because when you do so, you’re looking after the most important person in your baby’s life—you.

Finding the time to practice self-care, especially after giving birth, is necessary for your health and overall well-being. It will help reduce stress, fatigue, and burnout and make the motherhood experience more enjoyable. If you’re unsure where to start, below are several essential self-care tips you may want to consider:

Dress Well

Because what you wear affects your mood, feelings, and behavior, you may want to pay extra attention to your daily outfits. While it’s understandable that you want to wear something ultra-comfy as your body is still recovering, you don’t necessarily have to sacrifice style for comfort. Look for options that are both comfortable and fashionable.

For instance, you can wear high-waisted cotton leggings with a slight compression feature instead of ordinary sweatpants. Such leggings are perfect after childbirth as they’re soft, comfortable, and support your belly and pelvic floor muscles during recovery. They also hug your lower body perfectly to create a lovely silhouette. Pair these comfy and stretchy pants with a stylish sweater or tunic, and you’ll have a chic yet cozy ensemble as you care for your little one and welcome your baby’s first visitors.

Ask for Help

As the famous adage says, “It takes a village to raise a child.” That means you’re not supposed to carry the work all by yourself. So, don’t hesitate to share some of the load with your partner to avoid feeling overwhelmed. Let them change the diapers, rock the baby to sleep, and do the work around the house so you can get some rest.

You can also reach out to your family, friends, and neighbors for assistance. Perhaps you can ask them to grab a few items from the grocery store when you run out of supplies, bring dinner if you don’t have time to cook, or simply listen to your concerns when you feel stressed out. Chances are, most of them will gladly take the opportunity to help in whatever way they can.

Schedule Quality “Me Time”

You may not realize it, but you also need time away from your baby to be able to do other activities you enjoy. You can read a good book, go out for brunch with friends, take a stroll in the park, or engage in hobbies like painting or journaling. Taking a break and allotting time for delightful hobbies, even for a short while, can benefit you in many ways.

It can help reduce stress, improve mood, and reinvigorate your tired body. One study published in the Psychosomatic Medicine journal also found that engaging in leisure activities can boost your psychological and physical functioning. Essentially, you’re becoming a better person (and an even better mom) every time you take a break. So, squeeze in “me time” in your daily schedule and keep it as you would any other essential appointment.

Adopt Healthy Habits

Your postpartum body is still recovering, so you need to take extra care of yourself to heal, regain your strength, and prevent complications. The last thing you want is to get sick and have to spend time away from your little one. To support your health, consider practicing the following fundamental healthy lifestyle habits:

Eat a healthy diet. While you may be tempted to go on a diet after giving birth to lose pregnancy weight more quickly, this may not be a good idea. Most new moms like you need more than 1,800 calories to help the body recover and gain sufficient energy to care for the baby, especially when breastfeeding. So, make sure to consume a healthy diet consisting of whole grains, vegetables, fruits, lean meats, and low-fat dairy. Moreover, stay away from sugary and high-fat foods.

Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated and prevent fatigue, headaches, muscle cramps, and other unpleasant symptoms of dehydration. Although water is the best choice, you can also drink other liquids to aid hydration, such as milk, fruit juices, and other sugar-free and caffeine-free fluids. Even foods with high water content, like cucumber and watermelon, can help you stay hydrated.

Get adequate sleep. New mothers need to get at least seven hours of sleep. Otherwise, you’ll increase your risk of suffering from postpartum depression and other physical and mental health issues. That’s why you may need to rely on your “village” to get adequate rest and observe good sleep hygiene habits for a more restful sleep. You can also wear comfy nightwear and a sleeping bra with breast pads to avoid sleep disruption.

Engage in physical activities. Stay active to boost your health, reduce stress, and stimulate the release of endorphins to relieve postpartum blues. You can take a walk in the park, march in place, do yoga, or perform other low-impact exercises that you can find online.

In addition to these, this dentist who does dental implants in Redwood City CA also highly recommends visiting your doctors regularly to make sure that your health is in good condition.

As a new mother, making time to take care of yourself is not a luxury, but an essential component of maintaining good health and overall well-being—and ensuring your child receives the best care. After all, when you’re happy and healthy, you will become an even more incredible caregiver. As such, consider incorporating self-care habits into your daily routine. You can start small and progress as you see fit. Remember, even little positive changes can go a long way toward enhancing your physical, mental, and emotional health if you practice them religiously.

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