Thank you for reaching out for assistance. Taking courage to reach out for help is the first step. Please note that our area of expertise is in perinatal mental health – medical questions and concerns should be directed to your healthcare provider.
If you are contacting us from outside the province of Alberta, or outside Canada, please note that what applies in our environment may not apply in your environment. Here are some next steps you can take:
- Read through the FAQs below – your answer may be there.
- Talk with your local healthcare advisor.
- If you require immediate attention, call your local crisis line. If you cannot reach your local crisis line, contact your local healthcare advisor or let someone in your immediate circle of support know you are in crisis.
- Do you just want to talk and have someone listen? 7Cups offers free services with trained volunteers and therapists. Visit 7Cups for more info.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Are there medications that are safe to take for anxiety and depression during pregnancy?
A. While there are safe medications available, please consult your doctor or healthcare provider for advice on what may be best for your personal situation.
Q. How effective is counselling?
A. If you think you may be experiencing anxiety or depression during pregnancy or in postpartum, speak with your doctor. He/she may refer you to receive counselling to help you cope.
Q. I have struggled with my mental health in the past. Will I experience prenatal and/or postpartum anxiety or depression?
A. Our research has shown that previous mental health history is an indicator of potential risk for prenatal anxiety/depression. However, by being aware of this, we encourage you to to screen for any anxiety or depression while pregnant and to take active measures to prevent or cope. This can prevent or reduce postpartum anxiety or depression. We also encourage you to speak with your healthcare provider about your individual needs.
Q. How does postpartum depression affect my baby?
A. A parent can reduce the effects of postpartum depression on their child by cuddling and hugging their baby, effectively nullifying the effects of prenatal depression. Read this blog post to explore the research behind this.
Q. How do I know if what I am experiencing are mood swings or symptoms of anxiety/depression?
A. Here are three screening tools you can use to check your levels of emotional wellbeing:
- A simple 4-question screening tool
- This 10 question screening tool – (Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale)
- This checklist on mood swings, anxiety and depression
Q. I weigh ____. Can I safely conceive at this weight?
A. There may be a reason why your weight is high or low. We suggest you speak with your healthcare provider to make sure you are healthy if you have questions or concerns.
Q. I’ve been trying to get pregnant for ___ number of years without much luck. When I did get pregnant, I lost my baby. What should I do?
A. There may be a reason why you have struggled to conceive and carry your baby to full term. We suggest you speak with your healthcare provider to make sure you are healthy if you have questions or concerns.
Q. Can you help a pregnant woman living in war-torn circumstances?
A. It sounds like you are facing a very difficult situation. We regret that we are not connected with care providers outside of Canada. Is there a clinic in your area that you could go for help?
Q. Where can I find information on crisis centres in Canada?
A. Please visit this link for crisis centres listed by province or call 911 if you require immediate assistance. The Canadian Women’s Foundation: List of shelters and services divided by provinces and territories for women at risk of assault, abuse or sexual violence.
Q. Do you only help pregnant women?
A. My team and I aim to support pregnant women by providing them with research-based resources that help them understand their emotional wellbeing and do something about it for themselves.