Mental Health

Women so often put others’ needs before their own that they hide or ignore challenges they’re facing until the burden has become too heavy. Our team of caring and compassionate on-site clinical psychologists can help with anxiety, depression, postpartum depression, infant loss, eating disorders, menopause mania and emotional stresses. Here, you always come first.

HOW WE CARE FOR YOU

We know how it is: The to-do list is never done. The calendar is never empty. The kids are never in the same place at the same time. And we put ourselves last.

Long hours combined with lack of exercise and sleep leads to stress. And stress has very real physical and mental effects.

Our team of clinical psychologists can help you learn to manage your stress or get rid of it altogether.

To take care of others, you have to take care of yourself first.

We’ve been with you every step of the way during your pregnancy,  but it’s just as important to know what to expect after your baby is born.  That’s why we offer a workshop every Monday at 5:00 p.m. to help you prepare for your baby’s arrival.

Topics covered include:

  • Hormonal and physical changes you can expect after giving birth
  • Psychosocial changes—no sleep, no alone time, lack of control, etc.
  • Postpartum mental health conditions—prevalence, what’s normal, what’s not
  • Factors that may predispose individuals to have a postpartum condition
  • Coping skills that work best with your personality type
  • when to ask for help
  • treatment options

Being on your own with your baby for the first few weeks and months is one of the most eye-opening, messy, absolutely beautiful things you’ll ever experience in your life. And, it can be scary, sad and overwhelming all at the same time. Learning to embrace your messy, wonderful new world order isn’t always easy. But, it’s so worth it.

Let us help you learn about complete postpartum health-mind and body. Just as we help you develop a birth plan, let us help you plan for weeks and months after the arrival of your newest family member.

This workshop is offered free of charge to all VWC moms-to-be and their partners. But, advanced registration is required.  804.288.4084.

Just as your body is returning to its pre-baby size and shape, your hormone levels are also finding their way back to normal.

Along the way, your emotions may swing from elation to depression. You may feel overwhelmed, especially if your baby is having separation issues of his own and wants to be held around the clock.

Your roller coaster emotions should diminish over time.

But if you feel utterly sad and hopeless, or so overcome with worry that you can’t get any rest, let us know. These are signs of postpartum depression. If you feel angry or violent, call us immediately.  Clinical psychologists are part of your team and can help you through this difficult time.

Changing hormone levels make mood fluctuations common during and after pregnancy. But if any of these symptoms last for more than a week or two, you may be developing postpartum depression.

  • Significant hopelessness
  • Excessive feeling of guilt or worthlessness
  • Significant appetite changes (loss or increase)
  • Excessive sadness and crying
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Excessive irritability and anger/aggression
  • Agitation or inability to relax
  • Lack of motivation or pleasure
  • Lack of concentration or focus
  • Change in sleep patterns (sleeping much more or much less)
  • Excessive fatigue
  • Excessive anxiety or worry, especially about the baby

You are not alone. One in five women suffers from some form of postpartum depression. More serious symptoms of postpartum depression include thoughts of hurting yourself or the baby, fear of being left alone with the baby, or not wanting to care for the baby. If you experience any of these, call us right away at 804.288.4084.

Losing a child, whether early in pregnancy or after birth, is a life-changing event. And the pain can be unbearable.

Perinatal loss—miscarriage, stillbirth or infant death—affects more than one million families every year.  Nearly one in five pregnancies ends in a miscarriage before 20 weeks of pregnancy.

It can be difficult to recover emotionally, mentally and physically. Parents grieve the loss of their hopes and dreams, and the vision of their future with a child. There is no comfort for the loss of what they never knew.

Friends and family you would normally turn to for support may not have even known you were pregnant, leaving you and your partner to deal with the loss—and the emotions—in isolation.

You don’t have to be alone on your journey. Our clinical psychologists can help you through this incredibly difficult time. We offer individual counseling as well as a Compassionate Caring: Miscarriage and Infant Loss Support Group that meets once a month.

Let us help you find your way through your grief. 804.288.4084.

Dr. Cuseo-Ott and Dr. Polce are trained in clinical and counseling psychology, which means that they are not psychiatrists and do not prescribe medication. They work with your VWC provider to address psychological issues that may be interacting with OB-GYN concerns or impacting your general well-being and ascribe to an integrative, short-term model of therapy.

Dr. Cuseo-Ott and Dr. Polce provide evidence-based therapy with emphasis on stress management and cognitive-behavioral tools to cope with psychological and developmental issues affecting women’s health. If ongoing or long-term psychotherapy is needed, they will work with you to identify appropriate referrals in the community.

 

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“I appreciate VWC because they make me feel like an actual person with feelings rather than just a patient or a number.”