Pregnancy is one of the most important stages in a woman’s life. Definitely, it is a life-changing event. It marks the beginning of the phase in your life in which you start your own family. But pregnancy mood swings occur frequently. Of course, you wanted it to be perfect – free from all the hassle and the stress that comes with it.
However, as much as you wish it to be like a walk in the park, you find yourself easily irritated with the little things that you don’t normally care for. A little disagreement with your partner would turn out to be a huge quarrel. You easily get emotional and prickly which isn’t really what you are before pregnancy.
During pregnancy, will you find such a situation, the last second is still good, the tears in the next second?
The good news is that you are perfectly fine. During pregnancy, the pregnant mother’s body undergoes many changes. Due to such changes, mood swings occur frequently. It is very common to have ups and downs during pregnancy, especially in the early stages of pregnancy.
Early pregnancy, usually due to excitement and worry coexist, nervousness and early pregnancy reaction, affecting the mood of pregnant women, leading to greater mood swings, resulting in temper.
Then do you want to know why this happens during pregnancy?
What Causes Mood Swings During Pregnancy ?
1. Hormonal Changes During Pregnancy
Mood swings are generally due to the hormonal changes in your body that happens during pregnancy. This hormonal changes are essential for child development and prepare the mother’s body for childbirth.
On the first trimester of pregnancy, hormones such as estrogen and progesterone levels rise. Estrogen spikes during the first trimester and reaches its peak during the third trimester. The major increase of estrogen levels may cause morning sickness experienced during the early stages of pregnancy.
While estrogen is responsible for heightened energy and emotions, progesterone calms the nerves. Progesterone is responsible for relaxing your body to prepare you for birth. This is the reason why most pregnant women get constipated. High levels of progesterone relax crucial parts of your body. It may help slow down the digestion of food and decrease bowel movement.
The combination of estrogen and progesterone is the potent mix that causes mood swings. The fluctuating levels of hormones in your body generally affect your emotions during pregnancy. You may start your day right, but after encountering a thing that irritates you, you crumble and cry a lot. After a few minutes, you go back again on track. Pregnant women experience this on a regular basis. So you don’t have to worry a lot. Try to channel your thoughts on controlling your emotions when mood swings hit you.
2. Psychological Causes
Along with the hormonal changes of your body, excitement, fear, self-worth, and self-confidence are thrown in the mix. A roller-coaster ride of emotions might become unbearable for you. Late at night, you may worry too much about the idea of having a baby. Am I really prepared for this? Can I really give my baby a bright future? Am I doing this correctly? These are just some of the questions that might trouble you.
3. Other Causes Of Mood Swings
Other causes of mood swings include the discomfort you experience during pregnancy. You experience morning sickness on a regular basis. The constant feeling of nausea is tough and it may irritate you. Morning sickness may come at the most unexpected places. While going to work, you may suddenly feel nauseous. Hence, you’ll be starting the day on the wrong foot.
Fatigue can also be a factor in most mood swings. Pregnant women easily get tired physically and emotionally.
Discrimination is also common. In the workplace, you may be discriminated against just because on the fact that you are pregnant. You are singled out based on factors that are not totally work-related. Workmates tend to rub on you the fact that you can do less work and need more privilege in the workplace just because you are pregnant. In public places, people may treat you badly when they see that baby bump on you.
Can Your Anger During Pregnancy Affect Your Unborn Baby's Health?
1. Mood Swings Has No Known Adverse Effects To Babies
Generally, mood swings do not have adverse effects on your unborn baby. Mood swings are perfectly normal on pregnant women. Constant mood swings may be due to physical and emotional reasons. Hormonal changes on the body greatly affect the frequency of mood swings. On the emotional level, the person’s disposition may trigger common mood swings during pregnancy.
It is actually a common misconception that mood swings affect the child. Some people say that a woman with mood swings during pregnancy makes the baby suffer adverse congenital defects. Some also claim that the baby would grow up to be more emotionally dependent to the mother compared to other kids.
2. Depression May Lead To Negative Effects
However, as they say, everything in excess can be harmful. Severe mood swings could lead to depression and have negative effects on your baby. Studies have shown that severe depression and emotional trauma could lead to birth defects, premature birth, malnourish baby, and miscarriage.
The mother’s feelings have a physical connection to the unborn child. The mother’s thoughts are communicated to the child through neurohormones. This is similar to the physical effects on nicotine and alcohol to the unborn child.
Stressful pregnancy is also shown to have adverse effects on the psychological development of the child. Studies have shown that children born from extremely stressful pregnancies tend to have behavioral problems as they grow. Stress and depression during pregnancy affect the endocrine system of the unborn baby which has an active role in the fetal development of the child.
How To Deal With Pregnancy Mood Swings?
Firstly, you must understand that it is normal. Don’t panic. Women undergo this condition during pregnancy. The best you can do is to minimize or manage these mood swings to have a less stressful pregnancy. Pregnancy is stressful in itself. You must not do things to exacerbate the situation.
When you hysterically cry over a TV advertisement, here are some of the ways to manage your mood swings:
During pregnancy, your body may feel heavy. It makes women less energetic. Of course, the weight of your belly burdens the back muscles and hips. Regular exercise strengthens the muscles in these areas.
Exercise is one of the best stress eliminating activities. It improves the circulation of the nutrients all over our body which is helpful for your child. The distribution of oxygen throughout your body helps prevent constipation, leg cramps, and varicose veins.
More importantly, exercise helps you in childbirth. Studies have shown that exercise could help in minimizing the duration of childbirth and medical intervention. Exercise though does not eliminate or reduce the pain during childbirth, but it somehow shortens it.
You don’t need to do a heavy workout, a simple 5-10 minutes cardio workout every day helps a lot. Swimming is also a good physical activity. It provides you that sufficient cardio activity you need and it also helps in maintaining your muscle tone. Walking is also a good exercise. A 10-minute walk along the park also helps you to clear your mind from all the stress you are experiencing.
2. Take A Good Rest
You may experience lack of sleep during pregnancy. On the first trimester, mood swings are often. These mood swings may span during bedtime affecting your sleep. Lingering thoughts on childbirth may bring a lot of stress and anxiety. On the latter part of pregnancy, sleep can also be challenging considering the uncomfortable feeling on your belly.
Thus, you need to find ways to rest. A power nap really helps a lot. During breaks at work, you may take a short rest. This refreshes your body and gives you energy for the rest of the day. During bedtime, you may want to make your bed comfortable. Placing additional pillows would help. Pregnancy pillows may help support your belly bump.
Also, you need to minimize uneasiness during sleep. Just have happy thoughts when you are about to sleep. Don’t dwell too much on the negative stuff. Have a positive disposition and outlook on yourself. When you are able to clear your mind from all the negativity, sleep becomes easy.
3. Take A Break
Regular breaks help a lot in managing stress during pregnancy. Bond with your partner. Go on dinner dates or casual walks by the beach or the park. Being pregnant does not mean that you deprive yourself of receiving love from your partner. You don’t need to stay all day in your room just to keep your baby safe. You have the right to go out and enjoy. Being pregnant is not a burden, but a symbol of your love with your partner.
When your partner is busy most of the time, don’t fret. It’ll just trigger the mood swings you are having. Instead, have a “me time”. Do the things that you enjoy to do. Taking a break alone could help you strengthen your mind and know more about yourself at the same time.
4. Talk With Your Partner
Communication is an essential factor in relationships. It does not stop when you’re pregnant. In fact, you need to communicate more often with each other during this crucial stage of your relationship.
It would be convenient if your partner understands what you are going through. Mood swings can be triggered by disagreements between couples. Hence, it is important that your partner has to be more patient with you for 9 months.
You should also do your part. Being pregnant does not grant you a license to nag on trivial things. You don’t need all the drama and the brouhaha in the household. Instead, try to control your emotions. You need to consider that your partner is also going on through a major phase of his life. You need to work together with him to manage your stress levels.
Your partner may be the recipient most of your mood swings since you to express your anxiety and problems with the one closest to you. This can be tough to your partner. It is helpful that once in a while,express your admiration and love to your partner.
5. Have A Healthy Diet
As they say, you are what you eat. In the case of pregnancy, your baby’s health is what you eat.
Avoid unhealthy food during pregnancy. Pizza, fast food, and junk food are out. Try to have a balanced diet. Eat vegetables and meat during meals and fruits between meals. Meat gives you a lot of protein, but stay away from processed meat. It contains a lot of salt which is not healthy for you and your baby.
Avoid drinking alcohol. Alcohol could influence the development of birth defects on your baby. It also does not provide the needed nutrition for your baby.
Meditation works wonders on your mind. It helps to reduce anxiety and stress. Moreover, it gives an increased sense of well-being. You can meditate practically anywhere. Others try to meditate before they sleep. They try to reflect on the events during the day and plan on things for the next day.
You may also meditate at your favorite spot in your house. Others go to the beach to mediate or to a more secluded place.
Taking a yoga class is a form of meditation and exercise. There are a lot of yoga classes for pregnant women out there. Try to check on your area. There are yoga instructors who have developed gentle yoga exercises that improves blood circulation for pregnant women.
7. Seek Professional Help
As mentioned earlier, severe depression could have adverse effects on your baby. When you can no longer bear all the stress you are experiencing, you need to consult a counselor. They could advise on ways to manage your anxiety and stress. You don’t need to be diagnosed with psychological problems before you consult a counselor.
Mood swings and depression are different. Mood swings are brought about by the hormonal changes on the body during pregnancy. On the other hand, depression is a more complicated condition brought about by numerous factors.
When you have extreme difficulties going through your day, you may be suffering from depression. Depression could affect not only you but also your baby as well. Seeking prompt professional advice could be crucial. Unaddressed depression could lead to a more serious condition which is postpartum depression.
When a panic attack strikes, most people take medication without a prescription. You must avoid taking any medication without seeking professional help. Taking medication without prescription can be harmful to your baby. It could lead to incurable birth defects and other adverse physical conditions.
A Final Word
Again, mood swings during pregnancy is a normal thing. Your body undergoes a lot during this stage. Just maintain a positive attitude and everything will fall into place.