Mood changes during pregnancy are caused by fatigue and tiredness due to physical changes in the mother’s body, and psychological changes that are facilitated by fluctuating hormonal levels. Hence, they are most common in the first trimester, when the mother’s body is undergoing the majority of changes.
During pregnancy, the amount of oestrogen and progesterone in blood shoots up. This helps prepare the body for pregnancy, but also affects the mood, mothers feel tearful or easily irritated. Matters are made worse courtesy the various ailments that an expecting mother goes through, like heartburn, indigestion, even morning sickness, that leaves the body feeling completely drained out.
Some handy household tips to deal with mood swings are as follows:
- Get plenty of sleep
- Take a break during the day to relax and do not strain yourself
- Get regular physical activity
- Eat well and eat nutritious foods
- Spend time with your partner and share all the pregnancy experiences
- Go for a walk and stroll; communicate with people, and if possible, with other mothers-to-be, or recent mothers
- Don’t be hard on yourself and question yourself about competencies.
Most mood swings throw up symptoms like –
- Recurrent anxiety and increased irritability
- Sleep disturbances
- Change in eating habits
- Inability to concentrate on anything for very long
- Short-term memory loss
- Flipping between mixed moods – feeling irritable and angry and happy and elated intermittently.
- Having negative thoughts about oneself and the baby
- Feeling unable to cope with the physical and mental changes
- Constant worries like whether the partner would make for a good parent, how will the baby affect the relationship, what will the financial management be like, how will the baby’s health pan out, etcetera.
Mood swings, however, get cured on their own within a day or two. Medication is often not needed too. Interacting with close ones, talking and expressing feeling with the partner or even the doctor helps in most cases.
However, If mood swings become more frequent and intense and worsen with every passing day, then it imperative to speak with a doctor or psychologist. Severe mood swings, anxiety, depression will need coordinated medicines and synchronised hospital visits to be combated. Most cases may also require a generous amount of time too, to be dealt with.
Mood swings, unlike other physical ailments, may not show visible symptoms at the very onset. Many times, they may just revolve as questions and self-doubt in the mother’s head.
Hence, to ensure timely diagnosis and remedy of severe mood swing cases, mothers are told to open up their feeling and talk about how and what they feel.