"New Mom" Overload Can Lead to Mental and Physical Stress

Diane Schwartz, MD, Internist at Englewood Hospital and Medical Center, explains how “life overload” can cause physical and mental health challenges for mothers. Schwartz also discusses the importance of seeing your primary care physician regularly.

12/2/17 #621






"Welcome back to Life & Living. Life overload. My next guest says that it's real, and it's happening to a lot of us. Especially to us moms, which I know I can relate to. She is Doctor Diane Schwartz, an internist at Englewood Hospital & Medical Center. Welcome to the program. Thank you for having me. For those who don't understand, explain what an internist is. We do a residency in internal medicine, which essentially is all of the internal body organs that we have, that function to keep us healthy. So what kind of patients are you seeing as...? We see primary care patients, from adolescence through adulthood. More and more, we're seeing this trend that people are not... and we're trying to reverse it, right? And those in the medical community are trying to address it. But that more and more people are not seeing a primary care physician. Why is it important that someone have that yearly check up, that annual check up, that it shouldn't stop when you reach adulthood? We see that... we bring our children to the pediatrician to a certain age, and then it tends to drop off. We pick it up again at menopause, and after when we think we're at risk for diseases. Unfortunately, women from childbearing age to menopausal age, tend to use their gynecologist, obstetrician gynecologist, as their primary care physician. And that can be a problem. Why is that a problem? Especially in the context of how we started this segment, with this whole life overload concept that we're gonna get into in just a minute? Well women's health, unfortunately, for the patient who's not using a primary care physician, is more than just our reproductive organs. We have many other health issues that can come up. And we need to address them as they arise. Let's talk specifically about women for a minute, about the stress that life is putting on many of us... and it's not just moms, and it's also, to be fair, not just women. It is men as well. But when we talk about women, when we talk about stress and life overload, and all the responsibilities that so many of us are juggling, how do we see that impact our health? Both mental, physical, emotional, all of it? Well I think the big problem is partially that this society itself puts extra pressures on us, but we put the pressure on ourself. We expect to be fantastic at all the things that we do. We want to have a job and be great at it. We want to be the best moms we can be, and have these fantastic birthday parties for our children. I'm..."