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April is recognized as National Stress Awareness Month. Stress can have a negative impact on a person’s overall health and well-being. Managing stress is critical to creating and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Stress can take many forms. For many women, the transition into motherhood can be stressful. Nurse-Family Partnership is a program at Mesa County Public Health that works with first-time moms to help alleviate this stress.
Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP) offers support for women during pregnancy and up to their child’s second birthday. Each mom in the program is connected with a specially trained, registered nurse who will visit a few times a month. Last year, NFP nurses completed more than 3,000 visits to serve 267 clients in Mesa County.
“We worked with one local mom who had a baby under one and another on the way. She was dealing with her own health issues. Her husband had a stable job, but their housing situation was a challenge. There were days she felt overwhelmed. That’s where NFP nurses come in,” said Amanda Jensen, a manager for Nurse-Family Partnership. “Having a nurse visit her in person regularly made all the difference in knowing she and her husband could handle two children under two.”
The nurses help women learn and practice things that make them more confident as a mom, like breastfeeding, nutrition, child development, and safe-sleep techniques. The visits also include mental and physiological health evaluations, which enables the nurses to tailor their support and education to each mom. These women are also being connected to other resources that can help. Helping women have a healthy pregnancy and healthy baby, can reduce stress surrounding pregnancy, especially for first-time moms.
“Our nurses are fully invested in advocating for and providing new mothers with the confidence and tools they need not only to ensure a healthy start for their babies, but to envision a life of stability and opportunity for success for both mom and child,” said Jensen.
Research has shown this support leads to better pregnancy outcomes, as well as improved child health and development, and increased economic self-sufficiency. Nurse-Family Partnership empowers first-time moms to have a healthy future.
First-time moms must meet the eligibility requirement to become involved. Visit our website to sign up for the program.