Having a baby can be joyful, exciting and rewarding. However, it is also common for pregnant women and new mothers or fathers to experience anxiety, depression or emotional distress. As many as one in five women experience emotional difficulties during pregnancy and in the first year after their baby’s birth. This can happen to anyone.
This perinatal period is an ideal time for preventive mental health perinatal interventions that promote strong attachment and positive parenting, thereby reducing the risk of later mental health problems for both parents and child.
IAPT Lewisham offers free, confidential talking therapy for people who have a range of emotional difficulties during the perinatal period, such as:
It can be difficult to talk about how you are feeling and ask for help. Common reasons for this could be:
Struggling emotionally at this time can happen to anyone. It is not your fault. Asking for help doesn’t mean you can’t cope or are not able to care for your child. It’s the start of getting the right help and support to ensure you can be the parent you want to be.
IAPT offers short-term talking therapies to give you space to talk. The types of therapy offered will vary depending on your needs. These may include guided self-help sessions with a therapist, cognitive behaviour therapy, couples therapy, counselling and birth trauma therapy.
Alternatively, you could also ask your GP, midwife or health visitor to refer you.
We know that pregnancy and the first year of your baby’s birth is a very important time. Given this, prioritise clients who are in the perinatal period for an assessment and treatment.
A time will be arranged for you to speak to one of the therapists. When you have your first appointment you will be asked for some brief details about yourself and about your current difficulties. This helps us decide how we can best help you. At the end of the appointment, we will discuss the support options available and agree a plan.
IAPT services aim to be flexible. We want to make it as easy as possible for you to get the help you need. You can discuss attending appointments at a convenient time to suit your baby’s’ schedule.
5 week groups are for pregnant mums and new mums with babies up to 12 months old who live in the London boroughs of Bromley, Lewisham and Greenwich: