Guess what Mamas? I have a great and exciting topic for you today. We are going to talk about stress during pregnancy. I think this topic is very interesting because we have to deal with stress even if we are not pregnant or breastfeeding so imagine being pregnant with so many hormones floating in your body.
That’s a lot to handle considering what they do. Stress during pregnancy can affect you in daily life activities as well as stress with learning or having challenges with breastfeeding.
Stress affects breastfeeding in many ways. High levels of stress in breastfeeding moms can lead to a difficult let-down reflex, and it can decrease your breast milk supply. Too much stress in everyday life is also associated with early weaning from breastfeeding. As we know, healthy mental status brings the result of a live healthy baby! That’s what we want right? Here are some questions you may have concerning breastfeeding and stress.
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links and at no additional cost to you, I’ll earn a commission. Know that I only recommend products and services That I personally stand behind. When you use one of my affiliate links, the company compensates me, which helps me run this blog and keep all of my valuable content free of charge for wonderful readers (like you). Thank you for your consideration. See our disclaimer hereShop Amazon – Create an Amazon Baby Registry
What is stress and how does it affect my health?
Stress is the body’s reaction to any change that requires an adjustment or response. The body reacts to these changes with physical, mental, and emotional responses. Stress is a normal part of life. You can experience stress from your environment, your body, and your thoughts. Even positive life changes such as a promotion, a mortgage, or the birth of a child produce stress. Did you know that stress is normal for humans? The body can respond to these changes physically, mentally, or emotionally and it can be positively or negatively.Firstcry – Just in time for Stayaction – Ride-ons & Scooters
Stress can be positive, keeping us alert, motivated, and ready to avoid danger. Stress becomes negative when a person faces continuous challenges without relief or relaxation between stressors. As a result, the person becomes overworked, and stress-related tension builds. The body’s autonomic nervous system has a built-in stress response that causes physiological changes to allow the body to combat stressful situations. This stress response, also known as the “fight or flight response”, is activated in case of an emergency. However, this response can become chronically activated during prolonged periods of stress. Prolonged activation of the stress response causes wear and tear on the body – both physical and emotional. Hence, stress that continues without relief can lead to a condition called distress – a negative stress reaction. Distress can disturb the body’s internal balance or equilibrium, leading to physical symptoms such as headaches, an upset stomach, elevated blood pressure, chest pain, sexual dysfunction, and problems sleeping. Emotional problems can also result from distress. These problems include depression, panic attacks, or other forms of anxiety and worry. Research suggests that stress also can bring on or worsen certain symptoms or diseases. Stress is linked to 6 of the leading causes of death: heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, cirrhosis of the liver, and suicide.
Too much stress can bring addiction
Addiction to substances can destroy our bodies. So it is crucial that we control the stressors in our lives. Stress also becomes harmful when people engage in the compulsive use of substances or behaviors to try to relieve their stress.
These substances or behaviors include food, alcohol, tobacco, drugs, gambling, sex, shopping, and the Internet. Rather than relieving the stress and returning the body to a relaxed state, these substances and compulsive behaviors tend to keep the body in a stressed state and cause more problems. The distressed person (paid link) becomes trapped in a vicious circle.
How does stress impact breastfeeding?
Adding the stress of work, illness or financial problems can take its toll on your life and your body. This stress can also affect your breastfeeding plan. How Does Stress Affect Breastfeeding? Stress can affect breastfeeding in two ways: your milk supply and the contents of your milk.
When you experience stress, your body responds by releasing cortisol, adrenaline and norepinephrine. While these hormones can temporarily help your body deal with a stressful situation, over time, they can have a negative effect on your body both physically and emotionally. Stress doesn’t directly affect milk supply.
The amount of milk your body makes depends on how often your baby nurses. The more milk he or she drinks, the more your body will make. Stress can indirectly affect your milk supply, however, if you aren’t taking the time to eat or drink enough water or don’t have the time to nurse your baby as frequently as he or she needs because you are dealing with a stressful situation. Maternal illnesses, along with the medications that are prescribed for these illnesses, can also cause stress and reduce milk supply. One of the hormones, cortisol, can enter into your breastmilk, affecting its contents.
Studies have found that breastfed babies have approximately 40 percent more cortisol in their systems than formula-fed babies, suggesting that the cortisol found in breastmilk is responsible for this increase. Called “secondhand cortisol,” the hormone enters the baby’s intestinal tract and prompts neurotransmitter signals that go to the brain, affecting the areas that regulate emotion.
Though long-term effects of secondhand cortisol in nursing infants are unknown, a study from researchers at Arizona State University found that higher levels of cortisol corresponded to babies who easily cried or became agitated when placed in unfamiliar situations.
What determines a healthy baby after nine months?
A substance called Telomeres which are cellular structures that protect the chromosomes during cell division. Telomere length is a marker of cell aging that determines life expectancy and many age related disorders.
Longer telomeres can be beneficial for long-term health, while shorter ones can signify “various chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, some neurologic conditions, and various cancers,” past studies have suggested, according to the news release.
Shorter telomere sends signals to the rest of the cells that there is problematic DNA that needs repairing rather than replication. Continuous copying of problematic DNA will result in abnormal cell growth leading to cancer. In this sense, it also plays a vital role in cancer prevention. Thus shorter and longer telomere both have their benefits.Firstcry – Just in time for Stayaction – Ride-ons & Scooters
What are some healthy ways I can reduce stress during pregnancy?
Mamas, let me tell you something: decreasing your stress levels is very crucial for both you and your baby. You can try reducing stress by:
- Put God first in everything you do. God loves you and He wants you to succeed in your life. I encourage you to seek Him and His righteousness so that all will go well with you. (Joshua 1:9 KJV). He is also the one who can give us true peace as He leads us beside still waters and restores us.
- Always take time to be thankful to God for the blessings in your life.
- Make time to regularly exercise, such as enrolling in a baby/mom exercise class or taking a walk with your little one. You can also set regular exercise times at home.
- Exercise is good because it releases endorphins that can increase your happiness levels and help you to better deal with stress.
- Did you know that practicing deep-breathing techniques helps you to relax? Try it the next time you are stressed out.
- Communicate and connect with others by getting out of the house and meet up with a friend to talk.
- Take 15 to 20 minutes a day to do something you enjoy, such as reading a book, cooking, visiting or calling a friend, going to the beach.
- Get as much sleep as possible. Try to nap when your baby is napping or nurse while lying down in order to get some extra rest.
If you experience difficulty in remembering things, insomnia, extreme fatigue, a lack of appetite or are unable to enjoy things you once did, your stressful situation may have caused depression. Talk with a medical provider to a find a treatment that is right for you. Always follow after PEACE AND HUMILITY. Let it be the empire of your whole being. Only God can give you it.
Tips for breastfeeding in Difficult Circumstances
- If you are dealing with an illness in the family, divorce, death or loss of a job, the stress of the situation can make nursing extremely difficult.
- Be reassured that any breast milk that you can provide your baby during this time is extremely beneficial.
- If you want to continue nursing during difficult circumstances, make the time about you and your child.
- Close the door to the nursery, listen to calming music and focus on the special bond that you have with your baby.
- If you have to go back to work or have to be away from home to help out with family, using a breast pump will allow you to continue to provide your baby with milk while you are unable to nurse him or her.
- Stay calm, no matter what. Whether it’s the stress of everyday living or the severe stress from a catastrophic event, stress can affect both you and your baby.
- Make sure you eat the right foods to improve your mental capacity .e.g. all the green, and colorful veggies, fruits, nuts, and grains, meat, low mercury fish, poultry. These foods taken daily will help to enrich your blood and help you to feel your best mentally.
- Take the time for you to reduce your stress and seek out help from your friends and family in order to get through any difficult situations.
- Stay strong in God. Find the scriptures on PEACE and do what it takes to get your peace? Remember we all go through stress every now and then but management is the key to overcoming it.
What’s the connection for women, pregnancy and longevity?
One previous study suggests that the women’s age at the delivery of her last child affects telomere length. Thus it affects women’s aging process. The new study, done on a larger scale, was published on Wednesday. In this study, 1200 premenopausal women were participants. They belong to different localities, religions, lifestyles, and backgrounds.
Furthermore, they have age differences, weight differences, and habits. In this study, researchers noticed the length of telomere, women’s age at birth, and the financial status of the women. They also observe emotional, social, and other sociodemographic factors during pregnancy.
Additionally, the study proves the connection between telomere length and age of women at the time of the birth of the last child. According to the study, women’s age at the time of the last child’s birth affects the length of the telomere.Shop Amazon – Create an Amazon Baby Registry
Everyone wants to live a long, happy, healthy, and wealthy life. Scientists work to know the cause of aging so that science can be able to control the process of aging. Aging is the process of becoming old. However, at the cellular level, aging means that the cell ceases to divide. Furthermore, at the population level, aging means the population of species is no longer able to grow.
One theory does suggest that women who become mothers at a later age live longer. Dr. Stephanie Faubion is medical director at The North American Menopause Society. According to her, to understand the link between telomere and birth of the last child, more research is required.
Moreover, to determine the age of women at the time of the birth of the youngest child is responsible for longer telomere. And also to understand whether telomere length enables women to conceive at an older age or not.
Breastfeeding, life and stress can work together in harmony. But we must do our part in managing our lives. We know that healthy mental status brings the result of a live healthy baby. So Mama you must do all you can to make your pregnant journey a happy, healthy, and safe one. Stay strong in God. Find the scriptures on PEACE and do what it takes to get your peace? Remember we all go through stress every now and then but management is the key to overcoming it.
Thank you for stopping by today. I hope you learned something. You are welcomed to come again. I hope you find peace and joy in your life. You can overcome stress whether you are breastfeeding or experiencing a negative circumstance in your life. You can watch the video below to further understand how to overcome the stressors in your life. You can comment if you like. I would love to have your email address for more exciting topics. Let me know if you have a topic you would like for me to talk about. Enjoy!