While negative emotions are common, if they continue and interfere with your daily routines, this may be a sign of a bigger problem.
Since the NICU is very stressful, NICU parents are at a higher risk of having depression, anxiety or traumatic stress symptoms. It is very important to let someone know if you are struggling and are having any negative emotions or reactions (see NICU Emotions) that do not go away.
Sometimes it can be hard to ask for help, especially when you might be used to dealing with problems all on your own. There is no shame in getting help during tough times. Our staff is here to help you without any judgment. We want to be sure we are doing our best to support and help you.
Some support staff that are available to help are:
- Social Workers
It is very important for you to reach out to your unit’s support staff (social worker, psychologist, or chaplain) if you experience any of the following:
- Problems bonding with your baby
- Frequent crying spells
- Emotional numbness or feeling disconnected from reality
- Feeling unable to manage your responsibilities
- Not sleeping for many nights in a row
- Trouble getting out of bed and starting the day
- Thoughts of wanting to harm yourself or someone else or end your own life (suicide)
- Suicide Crisis Line: 1-800-273-8255 or 614-276-2273 (24 hours a day)
- Crisis Text Support: Text 4HOPE to 741-741
- Helpful suicide prevention safety planning apps: MY3, Mood tools
- Franklin County Crisis Hotline for youth (under 18): 614-722-1800
- The Center for Suicide Prevention and Research website includes tips and blogs that support caregivers