General mental health

RELAX – REducing Levels of AnXiety – in pregnancy and after birth


Online survey


18 and over



Time commitment

You will be enrolled in the study for around 9 months.

If you are randomly allocated to receive the RELAX training, you will be asked to complete twelve short online sessions (around 15-20 minutes each) over a 4-week period.

The four online questionnaires will take place at the start of the study and then 4, 8 and 36 weeks later. Each questionnaire will take around 30 minutes to complete.

Rewards and expenses

You will receive an online shopping voucher worth £25 for each of the four questionnaires you complete. Thus, you can receive up to £100 in total.

How to take part

About the study

Anxiety is common during and after pregnancy and can be very distressing for those who experience it.

Using what we have learnt from past research, we have produced a simple, online training programme called RELAX (REducing Levels of AnXiety). RELAX aims to reduce anxiety and negative thinking in pregnant individuals and new mothers.

In this study, we will test whether completing RELAX leads to lower levels of worry and anxiety during pregnancy and after giving birth. We will do this by randomly assigning pregnant individuals to either receive (i) their usual maternity care plus the RELAX programme, or (ii) their usual maternity care only.

What will it involve?

Individuals who are between 15-28 weeks pregnant who experience a lot of worry are invited to take part in our study. If you decide to take part in the study, you will:

- Complete a screening questionnaire to find out if you are suitable for the research;
- Receive an invitation to attend a short call with us so we can tell your more about the study;
- Randomly be allocated by a computer to receive (i) the RELAX training alongside your usual maternity care or (ii) your usual maternity care only. If you receive the RELAX training, you may be invited to take part in a recorded phone interview about the training after completing it;
- Complete four online questionnaires throughout the study.