Parent and infant mental health and wellbeing

Although becoming a parent can be an exciting and fulfilling time, for many it is also a time of uncertainty.

There are lots of changes, along with new pressures and worries.

For your baby, pregnancy and their first two years are one of the most important periods of their lives. At this time foundations are being laid that will influence their behaviour and emotions throughout their lifetime.

How you are feeling at any time is important, however, parents emotional health is especially important during pregnancy and the first two years after birth, for both you and your baby.

The health visiting team is here to support you to develop a healthy relationship with your baby from pregnancy until your child reaches five years.

To find out more about emotional health and wellbeing for the whole family, take a look at the mental health section within the following link:

Mental health problems can affect as many as one in five women during pregnancy and in the year after the birth of a baby, this is known as perinatal mental health. Partners can also suffer with mental health problems at this time.

It is important to ask for help early, as the majority of parents will make a full recovery. Your Health Visitor will be able to support you or help you to decide what support may be the most appropriate for you at this time. The following are links to local and national services that may be of help, along with some information about partner mental health:

Did you know that your needs are also recognised as high priority with our steps to wellbeing service?So if you choose to self-refer to this service, make sure you let them know that you are pregnant or have a baby less than one year of age.

In this link Mark Williams and Dr Andy Mayers from Bournemouth University talk about Perinatal Mental Health Issues in Partners. The video also features another Dad Mark, a father of twins, describing what happened when the birth of his twins went very wrong You Tube

BBC News ran this story about Dan and his struggles with perinatal mental health problems.

For further helpful information and video’s about perinatal mental health why not have a look at:

Care Of the Next Infant (CONI)

We are offering CONI across Dorset please refer into the team using the CONI mail box which is monitored daily. A coordinator will then be in touch to arrange contact.

Remember, you can speak to a member of the health visiting team by ringing your local hub in your area if you require further support.

Health Visiting