NICU PTSD is real! It is so real and probably not talked about as often. Parents with Babies in NICU are at a higher risk- approx 50% higher! Most parents don't know what to expect or what questions to ask at first. You're in unfamiliar grounds, surrounded by machines, medications and your child in an isolette. That can be very traumatic. Spending time in the NICU can be stressful, overwhelming and scary. That's when symptoms of PTSD can start. Sounds, scents, even seeing a full term Baby can all trigger a reaction.
Feelings can intensify after discharge... Now, there are different types of feelings... What was once fear of being there, can turn into fear of not being there anymore! Your comfortable setting, familiar faces and support team stay behind. This is when most Parents report feeling lonely and disconnected (myself included). I was happy to be home but missed our Team so much!!
I can still hear my shoes squeeking on the freshly waxed floors. The feeling of uncertainty as I pushed the buzzer in the waiting room. My heart dropping every time the automatic double doors opened. My arms burning from the strong hand soap. Details from every visit are still fresh in my mind. .
There is help! There are resources available. So, when the world tells you that you're supposed to be happy, and feeling anxious means you're ungrateful, please remind yourself that you're allowed to feel all of those things. You just endured trauma that most people could never begin to imagine. ⬇️⬇️Tag a resource Page in the comments ⬇️⬇️