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  • Writer's pictureMonica Jones

Perinatal mood and anxiety disorder treatment ideas

Updated: Mar 26

  • Infant massage-you don't have to be an expert! There are occupational therapy specific trainings for this treatment through continuing education websites. This is great for improving bonding with baby and improving baby's and caregiver's self-regulation skills.

  • Have caregivers journal "credit" throughout their day and review each evening as part of a sleep hygiene routine. Credit is anything someone does that's even a little bit hard for them (putting away half of the dishes, taking a shower, making their appointment, socializing with a friend, eating a healthy snack).

  • Collaborate on time management strategies like taking advantage of visitors and partners or nap time to give self time to do chores, get exercise, prep healthy snacks and food for the week, or have some quiet time to self.

  • If caregivers are having unhelpful thoughts, use cognitive restructuring strategies to redirect toward a more realistic point of view.

  • Incorporate exercise and outside time into daily routine whenever possible.

  • For anxiety, have caregivers rate on a scale from 1-10 how worried they were before and after the event and record in journal to gather evidence to look back on.

  • Use mindfulness exercises to allow caregivers to learn to confront worries instead of distracting themselves.

  • Use to do lists, alarms, and apps to compensate for forgetfulness and to improve organization of tasks, health management, medication adherence, and finances.

  • Chunk or break down tasks into more reasonable goals to increase feelings of productivity. For example instead of cleaning their room, make a plan to organize just one drawer.

  • Use energy conservation strategies to help caregivers make the most of their day by doing the most demanding tasks when they are the most alert.

  • Use sleep hygiene strategies such as lifestyle and habit changes, environmental adaptations, and cognitive strategies to improve sleep patterns.

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