You got the Baby Blues….

baby blues

Let’s talk pregnancy! Now before you start scratching your head and saying hey, isn’t today Mental Health Monday don’t worry. You will see the connection shortly.

So for 10-months you carried your precious bundle of joy. You had a normal, safe delivery and now have a gorgeous baby. You should be happy but you are not. Why? Don’t worry, this does not mean that you are a bad mother. What you are going through is not uncommon. It is what is known as “Baby Blues” and should subside a few weeks after birth. Some telltale signs that you may have the blues include,  anxiety, irritability, and weepiness. Think about it, your body just went through a huge ordeal. For almost a year, you were on hormone overload carrying new life and then poof, you are not carrying that load anymore. Your body is now changing and it has to play catch-up.

Medication is not necessary to treat baby blues. A little TLC should work just fine. Know that it is okay to cry. Hopefully, you have a support system. Your support system should know that you are not crazy. Their main role should be to just listen to you and encourage you.  You should also try to make time for yourself. Yes, you are a new mom and babies don’t care about your schedule. However, this is where your support system should come in. Even if it is only 20 minutes to practice some deep breathing exercises  make sure to make time for you. Not making time for yourself can cause your baby blues to postpartum depression (to be discussed at a later date).

There is no question that women rule the world. After all  we were the fair sex chosen to bring new life into the world. However, with that beautiful blessing sometimes our bodies tells us that we need a break. Baby Blues is one such way. After being pregnant and delivering a baby, you deserve a moment or two to regroup and breathe. Don’t worry you can get right back up and be woman to the rescue.

Today’s prescription: A good cry never hurt anyone. Everyone could benefit from shedding a tear or two. It is the weight of the world being released.

 

In health,

Maliyka is health

 

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The mental illness no one wants to talk about: Suicide

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A few weeks ago, I came across a video that literally had me in tears. In this video two women talked about their experience with attempting suicide. They were young and African-American. As sad as it was, it was enlightening.

For many years, suicide as been coined as a “white” person problem. Over the years, it has turned out o be furthest from the truth. According to the CDC, the most recent data shows that the highest suicide rates were among American Indian/Alaskan Native males with 27.61 suicides per 100,000 and Non-Hispanic White males with 25.96 suicides per 100,000. This group even had the highest rates for females. The Asian/Pacific Islanders had the lowest suicide rates among males while the Non-Hispanic Blacks had the lowest suicide rate among females. What is alarming is the rate for black men. The rates of suicide among black men are four times higher than black women. That number was from 2009 which, was not to long ago. The data also shows that between 1980 – 1995, the suicide rate among Black people ages 10-14 increased 233%, as compared to non-Hispanic whites.

The question is why? Going back to the video that the two women posted, they blamed their suicide attempts on being molested and bullied. Researchers blame it on socioeconomic (SES). The theory is that poverty causes mental illness and suicide is a result of succumbing to that mental illness. For black men, it has been theorized that the root of the problem goes back to slavery. The emasculation that was experienced has now become a part of the black man’s life making him more susceptible to mental illness and therefore suicide.

The reality is that, we must accept that mental illness is an issue and take steps to address it. Yes, from a religious perspective I believe that suicide is an eternal sin that is punishable by God. In the Muslim faith, it is believed that the way a person kills themselves will be the way they kill themselves in hell. Even still, while I don’t have any concrete numbers I am sure that some Muslims have killed themselves suicide bombers aside. We all understand the power of rather however, when someone is so mentally distraught directing them to only pray is not the best thing to do. The fact that someone is note playing suicide shows just how fragile their mind is. A fragile mind is the devil’s playground. The devil will have a person believe that a wrong is so right.

The reality is that suicide exist among people as a whole. The time has come when we must stop shoving its existence into a far corner. I commend these two college educated women who happen to be members of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.. I hope their courage and honesty inspired someone o reach out and seek help from a professional. I hope that it inspired people to be vigilant among their friends or families. Suicide is usually preceded by numerous signs that are often times ignored. Don’t be afraid to get butt into your loved one’s lives if you think that something is wrong. You just may save their life. If you can’t help them there is always someone who can. Give them this number, 1-800-273-8255. It’s the number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline in the United States

Words of wisdom: Suicide: a permanent solution to a temporary problem.

In health,
Maliyka is health

PMS and Insomnia

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As much as I love being of the femal persuassions, I can honestly say that sometimes being a girl just plain sucks pun intended. 21years ago I fully became puberty. I went from thinking that it was a joke to realizing that it was the real deal holyfield. Nothing about it was pleeasant and nothing still is. I can’t recall whether I really experienced PMS symptoms then. My skin didn’t go through an ugly transformation with all kind of little dots resting upon it. My junkfood intake was not through the roof. I was pretty okay, at least compared to now.

Fast forward to now and let me tell you PMS is the devil by another name. As I have gotten older, the torment that I experience before my period is just as bad as my actual period. Aside from the cramping before the cramping, my appetite puts a glutonous person to shame. After eating everything but the kitchen sink, I become so bloated to the point of pain. And a few months ago, I couldn’t sleep. These are just a few of things that I have to go through to honor my monthly committment to womanhood.

Not being able to sleep is completely new to me. I actually didn’t notice that it was a problem until I was marking all of the symptoms that I was experiencing in my trusty little application for my phone. This little application, Ovuview is really the greatest tool known to man. Aside from the obvious symptoms such as an increased sex drive, bloated, acne, I saw insomnia. Then it clicked. Not being able to sleep and having to force myself to sleep…Insomnia. Waking up for whatever reason and not being able to sleep…insomnia. I realized that I could add yet another sympton to my ever growing symptomatic life.

Well what do you know, it seems like I am not the only woman who experiences insomnia during the pms stage.

After doing some research, I found out that during the PMS phase it is quite common to experience insomnia. It would seem that after ovulation, progesterone levels are high and can make you drowsy. A few days before your period, both your estrogen and progesterone levels drop. This is typically the time when difficulty sleeping happens. This is exactly when it happens to me.

If you are having this problem and feel yourself being negatively effected speak with your health care provider. There is treatment available. For some light therapy may work. Others may need progesterone supplements. Personally, I drink a nice cup of tea. My favorite is Yogi’s Moon Cycle.

Either way, they say knowing is half of the battle. Now that I know, I still can’t sleep but at least I am not going crazy wondering what is wrong with me. I can still function. Probably more than what I was able to.

Words of Wisdom: Men truly could not handle having a menstrual cycle.

In health,
Maliyka is health