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Check on Mom was designed to help support moms as they navigate pregnancy and the first 12 weeks with their new baby, otherwise known as the “fourth trimester.” These time periods in motherhood can be wonderful, but they can also be overwhelming, emotional, and exhausting. The Check on Mom program can help provide support and resources, so moms don’t have to go it alone.
Check on Mom offers information, inspirational content, and curated resources from trusted advocates and organizations to help support maternal mental wellness and postpartum health. The program also offers resources to help moms and mom team members understand the signs and symptoms of PPD and encourage Mom to speak with her healthcare provider if concerns arise.
The centerpiece of the Check on Mom program is the mom team, which each mom is invited to form. A mom team is a group of 3-5 people, chosen by Mom, who commit to understanding and supporting her, ensuring Mom has the space and support to do what she needs to maintain her postpartum mental wellness.
PPD is defined as a major or minor depressive episode that occurs during pregnancy or in the first 12 months after delivery and is one of the more common pregnancy-related medical conditions. If you are concerned about PPD, talk to your healthcare provider right away.
In the initial days after giving birth, moms with new babies may sometimes feel worried, irritable, and tearful. This is known as the “baby blues” and it’s quite common. But, depending on when these feelings begin, how intense they are, and how long they last, they may indicate something more serious: postpartum depression (PPD). Here are some differences to keep in mind:
- Baby blues symptoms usually peak in the first few days after delivery, then resolve without treatment
- PPD symptoms can occur during pregnancy or after delivery, up to 1 year postpartum. Left untreated, symptoms of PPD may persist for months or up to 1 year
- The baby blues are characterized by mild symptoms, but do not impact Mom’s ability to care for herself or her baby
- PPD symptoms can be more severe and persistent and can interfere with daily activities and Mom’s ability to care for the baby
You can learn more about the baby blues versus PPD here. Speak with your healthcare provider about PPD if you begin to have concerns.
The Maternal Mental Wellness Plan is designed to help moms plan ways to focus on their maternal mental health and wellness while taking care of the baby. What do they want to prioritize while caring for a newborn? It can be anything—from a daily shower to a conversation with a friend. Mom can then share her list of personal needs, everyday to-do’s and postpartum priorities to her mom team to activate their support. Check out the Maternal Wellness Plan. As always, if you have concerns about PPD or are worried about your maternal mental wellness, speak with your healthcare provider.
Having a baby can be a wondrous, exciting time, but it can also come with unexpected emotions like anxiety, sadness, and feelings of being overwhelmed. That’s why it’s important for moms to plan for their maternal mental wellness after the baby is born. A maternal mental wellness plan for the fourth trimester (the first 12 weeks after birth) may help mom and baby through their first weeks and months together.
Check on Mom offers a Maternal Mental Wellness Plan that moms can fill out and share with their mom team so everyone can help support Mom in the way she needs. It’s important to note that the best resource for medical advice is always going to be a healthcare provider.
Whether you’re a mom, you’re on a mom team, or there’s a new mom in your life who you care about, Check on Mom wants to help make it easier to talk about the importance of maternal mental health. Check out the Loved Ones Discussion Guide for more information. Talk with your healthcare provider if you are concerned about postpartum depression (PPD).
Nope! Check on Mom is all about preparation, support, and overall maternal mental wellness, which does include being aware of the possibility of PPD. If you’re properly supported, you may be better prepared and informed about PPD. In the event you do experience PPD symptoms, speak with your healthcare provider immediately.
Check on Mom is offered at no cost.
Forming a mom team is completely optional. But support and community can be very beneficial to postpartum mental wellness, so definitely consider it. If you are struggling to gather a mom team, Postpartum Support International (PSI) and the Maternal Mental Health Leadership Alliance offer resources and support so you won’t have to go through it alone.
A mom team should be comprised of 3-5 people (or fewer) who you trust, who you enjoy spending time with, who you feel you can talk with freely, and importantly, you know they’re willing to lend a hand. These folks can be friends, family, a partner, sibling, parent, neighbor, a roommate, fellow member of a religious or community group—truly, anyone you think is right for the job.
Sometimes moms may just want them to have an adult conversation! But whatever is needed—from a walk or a chat to some light housework or babysitting—mom should just need to ask and readily accept any help the mom team offers.
But also, moms can use the Check on Mom Maternal Mental Wellness Plan to make a list of things they specifically need to maintain maternal mental wellness. For example: exercise, a solo walk, a night out with friends, a midday catnap, a clean house, help with meals—whatever those things are, moms can share them with their mom team so they’ll always know how to help even if she isn’t sure what to ask for.
Moms and their mom team can establish a communication plan in case any signs and symptoms of PPD become apparent. The more openly and honestly moms can speak about how they’re feeling, the more help a mom team can be. Sometimes it’s better to have a plan even if you don’t think you will need it. Check out the Loved Ones Discussion Guide to help get a PPD conversation started. And as always, if you are concerned you’re experiencing PPD, speak with your healthcare provider right away.
- Fill out the form here
- You’ll then see a confirmation page with the name of your mom team; on this page you’ll see a unique URL that was automatically generated
- Copy and paste that URL into an email or a text message to 3-5 friends, family members, or anyone else of your choosing