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The secret remedies to overcome Postpartum Anxiety naturally

The secret remedies to overcome Postpartum Anxiety naturally

Admit it.

You’re frustrated and distracted by your anxiety attacks.

Wouldn’t it be great..

  • If you didn’t have to worry your anxiety would get worse?
  • If you didn’t have to worry, that your children would get this?
  • if you didn’t have anxiety before your period, each and every month?

Picture this.

Knowing exactly how to soothe your anxiety and so you can manage it every day. So you can sleep better and not worry so much.

Let me show you how I’ve overcome anxiety with natural remedies.

But hang on… don’t forget to always check with your doctor before adding any new supplements to your diet. And if you’re taking medications, book a health consultation to double-check there are no herb-drug interactions.

Approximately 6% of pregnant women and 10% of postpartum women develop anxiety. Sometimes they experience anxiety alone, and sometimes they experience it in addition to depression.

Want to get started?

In this post, I’ll share how you can overcome postpartum anxiety with natural remedies.


What does postpartum anxiety feel like

Postpartum anxiety feels like a cloud hanging over your head.  There are waves of irritation and you may have a panic attack once in a while, due to this anxiety.

More commonly, moms may say they have …

  • constant worry about their children or others
  • they need to move or work and keep busy
  • they may get sick more often
  • they also have PMS and #pmsrage
  • they’re not mentally there and crave to be more present with their family

Why does postpartum anxiety happen

There could be many reasons postpartum anxiety happens.  As a women’s herbal educator, I help moms identify why this is happening and how to fix it.

Here are some of the reasons postpartum anxiety happens:
  • Low vitamins; particularly Vitamin D, Vitamin A, Iron, Vitamin B12 & DHA
  • Lack of sleep
  • Inflammation in your gut; specifically gut dysbiosis ² Gut-brain axis
  • Your hormones.  Are you in peri-menopause or have too much estrogen in your diet?
  • Your thyroid is off – hypo or hyperthyroid
  • Your nervous system is overreacting due to stress
  • Your body is not healed postpartum
  • Post-traumatic stress; unresolved anger from past events

 

You don’t need anxiety medications, you need to heal your gut

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5 Steps to reduce postpartum anxiety

#1 Identify your triggers

Often alcohol, caffeine, and sometimes foods {gluten & dairy} can trigger a panic attack.  We all know you don’t sleep well even with just one glass of wine! Write down when you get anxiety and what happen the night before.

👉Action step: Take the Gut Health questionnaire to see if you have gut dysbiosis.  Then reach out for a health consultation to help you heal your gut.

#2 Get outside!

Connect with nature again.  Raising little people often gets us stuck inside for long periods of time.  Raising twins, I rarely left the house for the first two years.  I was too busy cooking, cleaning, working and caring for them.  Commit to taking a walk or asking someone to watch your little one so you can get outside – even if it’s winter.

#3 Have your vitamin levels checked

Women are often very depleted during the postpartum time period.  Birth is one of the biggest events of your life, yet there is so little attention paid to mom after childbirth.  It’s insane!

Have your doctor check:

  • your thyroid
  • Vitamins D, B12, iron & DHA
  • consider testing for food sensitivities

#4 Integrate botanicals

Adaptogens and nervines can help soothe your anxiety.

Consider integrating:

  • Ashwagandha tincture for a daily
  • Motherwort tincture for acute panic attacks
  • Chamomile tea to ease evening anxiety
  • Lemon Balm tea, combined with Chamomile & Milky oat tops for a yummy evening tea
  • Milky oat tops tea
  • Stinging nettles tea
  • Passionflower tincture
  • Kava Kave tincture for acute panic attacks
  • St. Johns Wort tincture for depression & anxiety {caution use with SSRI’s}

👉Action step: Download my freebie to learn the herbs that are safe to use when you are breastfeeding.

#5 Tap into your creative side

What are you going to do with this one life?

Have you ever wondered if you have anxiety because you are suppressing something? That you want to say something or do something, you’re not doing?

👉Action step: Write it down.  Write down your hopes, your dreams, your anger and then let it go.

Conclusion

You can overcome postpartum anxiety when you tap into the root cause.  Vitamin levels, stress, gut health, and meditation can have a profound effect on your health.

What has worked for you? I’d love to know. Comment below.


References

  • ¹ https://www.postpartum.net/learn-more/anxiety-during-pregnancy-postpartum/
  • ² https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5641835/

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Everything You Need To Know About Postpartum Depression

Everything You Need To Know About Postpartum Depression

What if women knew how to support themselves when they had postpartum depression?

What would change for them? For their children? For their family?

Growing up, I was always a happy child.  So when Postpartum Depression hit me after having my twins, I didn’t know what to do.

I reached out for help, but I didn’t want to see a psychiatrist.  I also didn’t want to take medications.  So I suffered for twenty-six long months.

Postpartum depression is the thief that steals motherhood. – Cheryl Tatano Beck

Although I endured much great suffering, I vowed to myself to figure this out.  I enrolled to become a women’s herbal educator with Dr. Aviva Romm, to find out how to heal myself without medication.

—-

In this post, I’ll share what I’ve learned about PPD and how you can prevent it now or with your next pregnancy.

How does Postpartum Depression (PPD) happen?

The cause of PPD remains unknown, but some suggest reasons are…

  • The rapid changes in hormones during the postpartum period
  • Thyroid insufficiency (The thyroid can go from Hyperthyroid to Hypothyroidism 2-5 months after birth)
  • A rapid drop in insulin levels
  • Inadequate vitamins & minerals
  • Mother-child separation and negative birth experience
  • Lack of social and emotional support
  • Sleep deprivation

Postpartum Depression affects 15-28% of mothers

When does Postpartum Depression start?

Postpartum depression starts 2- 3 weeks after birth and can last up to a year or longer.


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8 Tips To Prevent Postpartum Depression

#1 Ask for help!

  • I wish I did more of this.  Now, when I need help, I scream “I need help!”  I never called or asked for help from anybody.  Ask, your friends and family – they want to help you.

#2 Talk about PPD with everyone

  • Tell friends you are struggling.  Write about your birth.  Write about your trauma.  Draw a picture of how you are feeling. The postpartum time is really hard. Talk about it.

#3 Get adequate rest

  • Sleep deprivation is real – especially if you’re a mom of multiples! Ask someone to watch the kids, sleep, and rest.  The house will be a mess, let it be.  You need to restore your health.

#4 Optimize nutrition

  • It has been suggested women are lacking valuable nutrients during the postpartum period.  When I opened my eyes after birth, it looked like a war zone! So much blood.  With that amount of blood loss, we have to restore the body with valuable vitamins.
  • Add these vitamins into your diet
    • Essential Fatty Acids – important for a healthy nervous system.  It is recommended to supplement with 1-3 g/day of fish oil with DHA and EPA to reduce depression.
    • B vitamins – needed for the growth of red blood cells, energy levels, and proper nerve function
    • Zinc – known to boost immunity, reduce viral illnesses and aid gut health,  add Zinc to your diet to restore your overall health.
    • Iron – A mineral vital to the proper function of hemoglobin, a protein needed to transport oxygen in the blood. Liver and red meat are the #1 sources of iron.  If you are anemic, you can add in Floradix; a non-constipating, herbal iron supplement.
    • Probiotics – If you’ve had a C-section or digestive issues, adding a probiotic 2-3 months after birth can help your body AND also reduce allergies in your child’s health. I like Klair probiotics. 

#5 Eat often to prevent insulin drops

  • Low blood sugar, can have a dramatic effect on your mood.  Add in a healthy fat and protein with each meal.

#6 Incorporate botanicals to soothe anxiety

  • Often we are afraid herbs will hurt our child. If there are no allergies, herbs can bring great comfort to both mom and baby.  In fact, in Croatia, Chamomile is the first botanical given to mom after childbirth.

#7 Add adaptogens to ease sleep deprivation

  • Adaptogens help us “adapt around stress”.  These miracle herbs can help you overcome postpartum depression – naturally.

#8 Integrate medications when necessary

{Please contact an emergency hotline if you are having suicidal thoughts for yourself or your children}

Is postpartum depression, baby blues?

There is a difference between Baby blues and postpartum depression.  Baby blues are considered a “normal” postnatal hormonal adjustments.  It begins day 3-4 and lasts up to 14 days. Symptoms include crying, irritability, fatigue, and anxiety.

*The key difference is baby blues are punctuated with periods of elation or happiness and postpartum depression is not.

When does postpartum depression start?

PPD can begin 2-3 weeks postpartum and can last up to a year or longer.  Symptoms include agitation, anxiety and panic attacks, confusion, despair, guilt, hopelessness, loneliness, nightmares, thoughts of hurting oneself or baby.  There are no punctuations of happiness or elation.

Where do you go for Postpartum Depression support?

Contact: Postpartum Support International

You can also contact our warmline directly and speak to a volunteer who will provide support, information, and resources where you live. Leave a message on our warmline 1.800.944.4773, and one of our volunteers will call you back asap. Calls are returned within 24 hours, and typically within a few hours of your request. If you are in crisis or need more immediate help…please call 911 or call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.

Conclusion

I believe postpartum depression can be reduced when we begin nourishing and supporting our new moms.  They need extreme nurturing and community – even when they don’t ask for it. With a postpartum plan –  filled with valuable nutrients, herbs, adaptogens, support and community our moms can thrive with health. Enjoy this season of your life and embrace these changes, as you will be stronger than you were before.

When sleeping woman wakemountains move – Chinese proverb


  • Romm, Aviva: Botanicals Medicine For Women’s Health
  • Fallon, Sally: Nourishing Traditions

 

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Colic Tea For Babies

Colic Tea For Babies

This soothing tea blend, can aid babies digestion and soothe the bloating and discomfort they are feeling due to colic.

It is also lovely for a new mom, to release nervous tension and ease any tummy troubles she is experiencing.

If you are worried about your breastmilk production, skip the lemon balm and sip on chamomile and fennel tea.

Chamomile

Matricaria recutita (German Chamomile) or Asteraceae Anthemis nobiles (Roman Chamomile)

Chamomile calms the spirit and is the number one botanical for both mom and baby.  As a nervine, it will soothe anxiety and restlessness.  It calms the digestion and soothes nervous stomachs.  It also can treat fevers, colds, flu, and headaches and relieve cramps from birth or menses.  This botanical is safe and calming and one of the best herbs for crying, restless babies.  Use it in baby’s bathwater to clear up diaper rash, heal wounds or cuts.

Fennel

Foeniculum vulgare

Fennel seeds are warming and a little spicy; aiding gas and bloating for both mom and baby.  Mom can eat them directly, if feeling bloated and make a cup of colic tea to feed to the baby by dropperful throughout the day.  This after-meal tea can ease gas, indigestion, abdominal pain and spasms.

Lemon Balm

Melissa officinalis

Known as the gladdening herb, Lemon balm lifts the spirits and as a carminative; it aids digestion and relieves gas.  The yummy lemony taste is well-loved by both women and children and when your little one is old; make a cup of Lemon balm tea with milk and honey.  It is also antiviral, so it is very effective for breaking fevers and treating colds and flu.

The slight minty taste may lower moms breastmilk, but will certainly do no harm to the baby.  And, as a combined tea blend, it may relieve moms’ anxiety and restlessness and lift her spirits.

Read herbs to avoid while breastfeeding: https://kellymom.com/bf/got-milk/herbs_to_avoid/

 

Colic Tea For Babies

Ingredients

  • Dried Chamomile Flowers
  • Dried Fennel Seed
  • Dried Lemon Balm {skip if breastfeeding}

Instructions

  1. Combine all three herbs in one container
  2. Take 1 tbs. of herbs to 1 cup of boiling water
  3. Cover and steep for 10 minutes
  4. Strain and add honey ONLY if mom is drinking the tea
  5. Drink the tea before breastfeeding
  6. If you are offering the tea to your baby, strain and cool the tea. Add the cool tea by dropperful to the baby while feeding or add to bottle if bottle fed.
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5 Colic Remedies For Breastfed Babies

5 Colic Remedies For Breastfed Babies

Be honest.

Your colicky baby is driving you mad.

I can relate.  My son had colic, a milk allergy, and reflux and had to sleep inclined for months. It was exhausting.  They actually have correlated PPD with colicky babies. ¹  This was true for us.

What if you could soothe your child so they would sleep more easily?

Imagine what it would be like to have a child who slept and was not in pain.

But don’t forget.  Always check with your doctor before adding anything new to your child’s diet.

Want to get started? In this post, I’ll share how addressing your child’s gut health can reduce the pain from colic.

What is Colic in babies?

colic

Colicky babies follow the rules of three.

  • They typically are 3 months old
  • Cry for 3 hours at a time
  • For at least 3 days a week!

You may notice your baby’s legs are drawn up and your baby seems like they are in pain.  Colic is due to digestion and the pain may be due to excessive gas.

Other symptoms you may notice:

  • Your baby clenches their fists
  • They have a red, flushed face
  • They tighten their stomach muscles
  • They have a bloated tummy

What Causes Colic?

Here’s the thing.  Colic is the start of what’s called an Atopic triad; Eczema, Seasonal Allergies, and Asthma symptoms typically follow children with colic.

Although not completely sure of the cause of Colic, these kids also have higher strains of gut bacteria called Clostridia, which cause gas, bloating and indigestion. ²

And, C-section babies have lower rates of Bifidobacterium-like bacteria and Lactobacillus-like bacteria, compared to vaginal births. ³ Which may affect their digestion.

 

Here are a series of steps you can try to soothe your colicky baby.

Colic affects up to 28% of infants¹

5 Colic Remedies For Breastfed Babies

#1 Address their gut health

If your child was born via C-section, was formula fed, or has had one round of antibiotics, their gut health may be compromised.  Try an elimination diet for mom if breastfeeding or Hydrolyzed protein formula if your child is bottle-fed. You could also explore goats milk formula as well.  Moms like Holle formula. 

In one study,  the infants who received 5 drops of L reuteri each morning 30 minutes before the morning feeding and moms removed dairy from their diet, had a 50% reduction in crying time; compared to the placebo group. ¹

#2 Consider an elimination diet for mom

If you are breastfeeding, mom may consider an elimination diet due to gut dysbiosis; which is the imbalance of the microbial in mom’s gut due to medications, stress, birth or yeast in the gut.

  • For mom: Removing the top allergens: Gluten, and dairy if breastfeeding and consider healing your gut with the 4R approach
  • If your baby is eating – remove gluten and dairy as well in the baby’s diet

#3 Add Lactobacillus to both of your diets

Lactobacillus can break down the sugar and hydrogen gas that is causing the cramping.  I like Klair infant probiotic for baby and Klair Women’s for mom. 

# 3 Drink Herbal Teas

Offer your child chamomile tea to aid with digestion or sip on this before breastfeeding to support elimination and gas.

Colic Tea for Babies

Combine equal parts of the following herbs.  Then take 1 tbs. to 1 cup of boiling water.  Cover and let steep for 10 minutes.  Strain, then use a dropper to administer to children throughout the day to soothe gas and belly bloat.

#4 Essential oil for gas {externally}

A relaxing herbal bath can help relax baby and release gas.

  • Add just 1 drop of chamomile essential oil or lavender essential oil to 1/4 cup of milk and add to the tub for baby
  • Alternatively, you could make a strong cup of chamomile tea, cool it and it to the tub as well

Tummy massage

  • Make a calming massage oil by blending 1 drop of essential oil of chamomile or lavender in 1 tsp. of almond oil
  • Massage up the baby’s right side, across the middle and down the left to aid digestion
  • PLEASE USE JUST 1 DROP FOR INFANTS

#5 Consider the 4R approach to heal moms gut from dysbiosis


Homeopathic remedies for colic

I also LOVE using homeopathy with children.  Here are some great remedies for colic.

  • ColocynthisThe child’s belly feels better from firm pressure.  They are cranky and double up and scream with gas pains.
  • Magnesia phosphoricaThe baby wants warmth and gentle pressure on the belly.  The key sign in a warmed bottle over the belly feels better. 
  • Bryonia- The baby does not want to be carried, asks for a drink and then doesn’t want it.  Irritable and worse for moving, carrying or jarring. They can’t stand to be moved
  • Chamomilla –The child wants to be carried constantly but that doesn’t help. They cry for water and then don’t want it.  They wine for toys and then throws it away.  Often they have one red check and the other pale.  You cannot please or soothe the child who needs chamomille. The key sign is they calm down more when carried and fuss when put down.

Conclusion

Colic in babies is a sign of too much gas in their belly, due to an imbalance of gut bacteria.  Addressing mom’s and babies’ gut health can stop the pain and allow your baby to be soothed. Drinking herbal teas and integrating homeopathy can aid digestion for both mom and baby and reduce the excessive gas; causing the pain.

 


Resources

  • ¹https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3183958/
  • ² https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10434974
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26111284
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9890463
Everything You Need To Know About Postpartum Depression

Why adaptogens are perfect for PPD

Be honest.

You’re struggling with postpartum depression.

Do you want to know how I healed depression, anxiety, and insomnia naturally?

Botanicals.

Specifically adaptogens and nervines. And.. it takes a comprehensive approach.

You’re afraid they may not work.  You’re afraid of going off your medications – or even taking medications.

I understand.

Here’s the thing….

  • If you choose not to take medications, you’ll suffer for many years with insomnia, depression, and anxiety. It may get worse.
  • If you choose to take medications, you may struggle with side effects like loss of libido, incontinence, and weight gain. {some women do need this and it’s ok!}

But hang on… before we dive in, always check with your doctor before adding any herbal supplements to your diet. And, if you need medication now – please start taking it and integrate these suggestions with your doctor.

Reality is, it takes a multi-directional approach to heal postpartum depression.

Here are the 7 parts you’ll want to explore to heal PPD:
  1. Community – connecting with others around you
  2. Gut health – are you experiencing discomfort with digestion
  3. Insomnia – are you struggling with sleep?
  4. Anger – have you noticed you’re angry and lashing out?
  5. Anxiety – do you have panic attacks?
  6. Depression – do you feel you will hurt yourself or your child? (Please call PPSI here)
  7. Stress – how are you reducing your stress every day?

Want to get started? In this post, I’ll share how adaptogens can help you.

Let's end anxiety

First, Postpartum Depression Signs

It is as if you are living outside of your world, looking in and you cannot recognize the woman you see. You may experience any or all of these:

  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Confusion
  • Despair
  • Difficulty relaxing
  • Feeling inadequate
  • Guilt
  • Hopelessness
  • Inability to cope or function with daily life
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Irrational concern for the baby’s well-being
  • Joylessness
  • Loss of interest in normal activities
  • Memory loss
  •  Poor concentration
  • Sadness
  • Thoughts of hurting oneself or the baby ·

Note: You should report all of these symptoms to your doctor, especially if you’re struggling with thoughts of hurting yourself or the baby. The vast majority of women with PPD will not harm their babies. But the fear that you might be can be petrifying and all-consuming. Professional help is available. NYC health lists.

What are adaptogens?

Adaptogens are a category of herbs that help us adapt to stress.

List of adaptogen herbs:

  • Panax Ginseng
  • Ashwagandha
  • Holy Basil
  • Astragalus
  • Licorice
  • Rhodiola

Essentially, the HPA Axis (or hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis ) is how our brain and body communicate with each other — and when we’re stressed out, it sets in motion a series of hormonal and neuroendocrine responses that control our body’s primary alert system, known as the “fight or flight” response.

When you’re in fight or flight, you may experience increased heart rate, increase blood pressure, a sudden need to pee or dilated pupils. Sounds smells, and colors may all become more vivid because all of our senses go on high alert as well.

The problem is that many of us live in a chronic state of fight or flight, especially in the postpartum years when you’re being woken up at all times of the night, or constantly having to jump up every time a baby cries.

Over time, this can lead to dysfunction. The HPA Axis loses its ability to shut off and leaves us in fight or flight mode all day long. If you’re struggling with PPD, you’re probably stuck in this mode as well.

A category of herbs called adaptogens can help regulate this stress response. In traditional medicine systems, these are also known as “tonics” and their purpose is to help restore adrenal health, ease anxieties and reduce cortisol levels.

My favorite adaptogen to use with postpartum breastfeedding moms is Ashwagandha, known as the “strength of stallions” as it strengthens the immune system, reduces cortisol levels and balances thyroid hormones. (It’s considered a Level 1 category, in the herb/risk during lactation categories and considered safe to take when you’re breastfeeding.)

If you’re not breastfeeding ginseng (Panax ginseng), St. John’s wort, Schisandra and Kava Kava may help as well.

Conclusion

When taken correctly, adaptogens and nervines can support you when you are going through anxiety and depression.  If you are struggling, please ask for help.  Medication may be the right answer for you, but it doesn’t mean forever.  Diet, community, sleep, and nutrition can help reduce your symptoms and help you feel like yourself again.

Ready to reduce your anxiety? Book a health consultation today. Book now. 


References:

What causes postpartum depression? Dr. Kelly Brogan

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