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Alesha Dixon health: It was overwhelming – star battled mental health in pregnancy

This Morning: Dr Nighat on physical impacts of mental health

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The 43-year-old said she had to “put a smile on my face” when she was working on the talent show The Greatest Dancer. At the time, she was pregnant with her daughter Anaya but said all she wanted to was hide away and lock herself up.

She told The Sun: “I was filming The Greatest Dancer in high heels right up until I was eight months pregnant.

“I was working hard and looking after another child at the same time.

“It was overwhelming and I would have moments when I felt really down and was really struggling but didn’t really know why.

“I think a lot of women can relate to locking themselves in the bathroom and having a little cry.”

The Mayo Clinic suggests that about seven percent of pregnant women experience depression during their pregnancy.

Known as antenatal depression – the condition if prolonged beyond childbirth can lead to postnatal depression.

Studies have found “good evidence” that psychiatric disorders during pregnancy have a “deleterious effect” on child development.

“It can be really confusing being pregnant,” Dixon added.

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“On the one hand you are joyful, excited and happy to be having a baby, but then your hormones and your emotions are saying the opposite.”

The exact causes of antenatal depression aren’t known exactly.

There are studies suggesting it is caused by both psychological and physical changes that parents undergo during pregnancy.

This includes life changes as well as hormonal changes.

Since the birth of her daughter, Dixon has released music related to mental health struggles.

Her song War is specifically about her battles with mental health.

According to the star, music has been “straight up therapy.”

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She wrote on an Instagram post after the release of her song War about how important music has been as a treatment for her.

“Music is straight up therapy! Grateful for this outlet! Thank you @applemusic for your support with WAR and thank you for listening!” she said.

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