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8 Ways to calm anxiety while pregnant

8 Ways to calm anxiety while pregnant

Are you wondering which herbs are safe during your pregnancy for stress and anxiety?

In this post, I’ll cover the top eight botanicals to ease your sleep and anxiety now. Plus, you’ll be able to use most of these during the postpartum period as well.

>>>>But, first, please note that the stronger herbs {Valerian, Skullcap, Passion Flower, and California poppy} may be considered; but due to lack of studies and their safety, they should be limited to:

  • short term use
  • and avoid in the first trimester

Keep in mind, teas are very nutritious and typically the chosen method during pregnancy, but when you need a quick method to get to sleep faster; you’ll want to choose a tincture or extract.

  • Consider drinking the teas 2 hours before bed to prevent nighttime waking.
  • And, you always want to check with your doctor before adding in any new herbal remedies; especially for first-time pregnancies.

See your doctor right away with any of the following signs:

  • vaginal bleeding
  • herpes breakout
  • severe pelvic or abdominal pain
  • severe mid-back pain
  • edema or hands and face
  • severe headaches, blurry vision
  • rupture of membranes prior to 37 weeks
  • regular uterine contractions
  • no fetal movement

So what are some common symptoms of prenatal anxiety?

10 Pregnancy Anxiety Symptoms

Here are the ten most common symptoms moms say they have when they experience anxiety.

  • you can’t sleep and have insomnia
  • heart palpitations – a quickening of your heart
  • dizziness, light head
  • stomach issues
  • tight chest
  • shortness of breath
  • headache
  • sweating
  • can’t focus
  • crying spells

What can you do about it?

Gradually add in one botanical at a time and consider walking daily, along with making yoga and meditation a priority to soothe your stress now – naturally.

8 Natural Remedies for Anxiety During Pregnancy

  • #1 Lavender {Lavandula officinalis}

    • To promote sleep, relieve anxiety – generally considered safe during pregnancy
    • The essential oil has been shown to inhibit the stimulant effects of caffeine.
    • The herb should be taken as a tea or tincture and the essential oil should never be taken internally during pregnancy.
      • Keep in mind, that essential oils may have an estrogenic effect on us; especially when taken internally.
  • #2 Chamomile {Matricaria recutita}

    • To promote relaxation, treat insomnia and digestive pain, like gas. Drink tea nightly 1-2 hours before bed to prevent night waking due to urination.
    • Dosing:
      • 1-5g/day in tea
  • #3 Lemon Balm {Melissa officinalis}

    • To promote sleep, relieve anxiety – generally considered safe during pregnancy
      • Patients with thyroid disorders or taking thyroid medication should avoid using Lemon Balm during pregnancy due to the theoretical risk of reducing thyroid function from this herb. {but highly unlikely}
    • The yummy lemony flavor is known to lift your spirits, reduce stress headaches, ADHD, SAD, and enhance your sleep.
  • #4 California poppy {Eschscholzia californica}

    • It promotes sleep, relieves anxiety, and is considered a stronger nervine than Chamomile, Lemon Balm, and Lavender.
    • Consider the tincture for short-term use if you cannot sleep and only in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters.
  • #5 Passionflower {Passiflora incarnata}

    • Used to quiet the mind, promote sleep, and relieve anxiety, and is considered a stronger nervine than Chamomile, Lemon Balm, and Lavender.
    • This is for the mom who cannot “shut off” her mind at night.. you lay thinking about the day. It’s like a radio station is turned on, passionflower is the off button.
    • Consider for short-term use in the 2nd or 3rd trimester ONLY.
  • #6 Skullcap {Scutellaria lateriflora}

    • Used for headaches, insomnia, stress, tension promote sleep, relieve anxiety, and is considered a stronger nervine than Chamomile, Lemon Balm, and Lavender.
    • Consider using it if you’re nervous, agitated, and have muscle spasms. You may be grinding your teeth and have restless leg syndrome.
    • Consider for short-term use in the 2nd or 3rd trimester ONLY.
    • Dosing:
      • Take 30 drops of tincture in 1/4 cup of water; 1-2x before bed, for short-term use only, or drink a cup of tea with a dash of skullcap in the tea.
  • #7 Valerian {Valeriana officinalis}

    • It promotes sleep, relieves anxiety, and is considered a stronger nervine than Chamomile, Lemon Balm, and Lavender.
    • Consider for short-term use in the 2nd or 3rd trimester ONLY.
    • Dosing:
      • Take 30 drops of tincture in 1/4 cup of water; 1-2x before bed. For short-term use only.
  • #8 Cramb bark {Viburnum opulus} & Black haw {Viburnum prunifolium}

    • Not necessarily a nervine; Cramp bark and Black haw can ease cramping and pain in the pelvic region – reducing the anxiety that may occur with this cramping.
      • These two botanicals have a long history of the use of spasmodic muscle discomfort.
      • During pregnancy, they have traditionally been used to relieve restless leg symptoms; in the legs, back, and particularly the calf.
      • You may also want to ask your doctor about adding Mg to your diet as well.
      • Considered generally safe during pregnancy and works amazingly fast for postpartum cramps and PMS.
    • Dosing: no more than 5ml/day total
      • Watch this video to learn more:

Anxiety Attack During Pregnancy

If you’re experiencing anxiety attacks, it’s time to address them now.

  • Make exercise a priority for you
  • Write nightly about your worries
  • Practice breathing and meditation
  • Make sleep a priority as well
  • Make a tea of Chamomile, Lemon Balm with a dash of Lavender to sip on most days
  • Consider seeing a therapist as well to talk about your concerns and/or trauma

Pregnancy Anxiety At Night

To reduce anxiety at night, consider incorporating a nightly routine

  1. create a safe, comfortable sleep environment with blackout curtains and a sound a machine
  2. try yoga, more specifically yoga Nidra before bed
  3. take a warm both an hour before bed and add 5-7 drops of Lavender essential oil or rose oils
  4. get into bed for 30 min. before sleep and journal or read a book
  5. have your partner give you a massage before sleep
  6. eat a light snack before bed
  7. avoid caffeine, television, and spicey meals within 2 hours of sleep

And, I’d like to applaud you for reaching out and seeking natural remedies for anxiety.

xo

Tara

P.S. Have you tried one of these herbs before? Let us know in the comment area below. I’d love to hear from you. đź’•

P.P.S. Watch this video to recap:)

References

  • Romm, Aviva Dr.: Botanical medicine for women’s health

 

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